Now we're at the start of the Western Conference Finals here on Monday. I am loaded up with props picks for this one, so follow along if you feel like cashing some winning tickets!
Andre Iguodala O/U 13.5 points, rebounds and assists
Last season in the NBA Finals, Andre Iguodala won the MVP, and for good reason. After playing sporadically in the first three rounds, Iguodala stepped up and started for the last five games of that series. In the NBA Finals he averaged 16.3 points, 5.8 rebounds and 4.0 assists in nearly 37 minutes per game. While I doubt he gets 37 minutes in Game 1 of this series, they are going to need to unleash Iguodala if the Warriors want to get past the Thunder.
Oklahoma City has thrived in the playoffs with their big lineup, and the only way they are going to be able to counter their big lineup is the play smaller. Iguodala has not been as effective so far in the playoffs, but if the Warriors go small, you best believe that Iguodala is going to be on the court in crunch time. With a prop of only 13.5 points rebounds and assists, on the NBA odds market, this one is an easy over play for me tonight despite the chalk.
My Pick: Over 13½ -140
Best Line Offered: at bet365
Russell Westbrook O/U 37.5 points and assists
Speaking of easy over plays, when Russell Westbrook is dishing the ball, the Thunder are hard to beat. We talked a little about this on the Odds Couple show this morning, as well as our breakdown of this series, but the Thunder is going to need Westbrook to be aggressive if they want to win this series. Being aggressive does not only mean scoring though. He is going to need to be that duel threat for the Thunder, and he is going to need to put pressure on Stephen Curry.
Curry’s knee is reportedly still bothering him, and while that may not mean much when it comes to Game 1 or this series, I expect Westbrook to be aggressive on both ends of the court from the get go. During the regular season, Westbrook averaged 25 points and nearly 11 assists per game against the Warriors, and in the playoffs, Westbrook has had seven games of his 11 postseason contests where he would have cashed the over with this prop. In what could be an up-tempo game with lots of possessions and scoring opportunities, I am going with the over in this one as well.
My Pick: Over 37½ -115
Best Line Offered: at Bovada
Draymond Green O/U 3.5 free throws made
Out of all these, Draymond Green’s free throw total is probably my favorite prop of the day. At only 3.5, even with the pretty heavy chalk, the over looks like a lock, so make sure to add it to your NBA picks. He has attempted 20 free throws in his last two games, and he has made at least eight free throws in three of his last five games. They are going to need Green to keep attacking the rim for several reasons, but the main one is they are going to need to get some of these Thunder big men in foul trouble.
You didn’t see Green get to the line a lot in the first round against the Rockets, but in five games against the Blazers in the second round, Green had a free throw attempt rate of .534, which means he was taking a free throw about every two field goal attempts. In his last two games, that number shot up to 1.25 free throws per shot attempt. If he can keep that pace up in this Game 1, the over should be a lock and my best prop pick of the night.
My Pick: Over 3½ -135
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline