NBA Pick: Golden State Warriors, Toronto Raptors ‘under’ 202

LT Profits Sports Group

Monday, January 28, 2013 5:00 AM GMT

Monday, Jan. 28, 2013 5:00 AM GMT

The Warriors have lost their shooting touch during their Eastern road trip, but their underrated defense continues to perform well. Go ‘under’ vs. the Raptors in Canada Monday.

Look for a lower scoring game than the high posted total would indicate Monday night when the Golden State Warriors (26-17, 12-11 away) pay a visit to the Toronto Raptors (16-28, 11-10 home) north of the border at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, ON Canada at 7:05 ET.

The posted total at Pinnacle Sports is 202 for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at -105.

The Warriors have certainly been one of the more exciting young teams in the NBA this season, a season where perhaps the biggest highlight was a 104-99 upset of the Oklahoma City Thunder last Wednesday.

However, Golden State immediately embarked on a four-game road trip vs. the Eastern Conference following that contest and they have somehow lost their shooting touch along the way. Now the Warriors are still a very young team so a case can be made that they became a bit full of themselves after beating Kevin Durant & Co., but the counter argument to that is that the defense has continued to yield low shooting percentages.

The Warriors have opened up this road trip to losses to the Chicago Bulls and the Milwaukee Bucks, and if you want to go back to a home loss to the Miami Heat about two weeks ago, then Golden State is 0-3 in its last three games vs. Eastern Conference opponents while averaging only 88.0 points on a measly 37.8 percent shooting!

Golden State opened up this trip with a 103-87 loss in Chicago and then the 109-102 score in a loss in Milwaukee was extremely deceptive as the Warriors shot just 41.9 percent from the floor while holding the Bucks to only 40.6 percent shooting. The reason for the high score was that the game was played at an extraordinarily fast pace, with the Bucks in fact getting off 101 field goal attempts in a regulation game and the Warriors shooting 93 times from the floor!

Do not look for a replay of that here with the Raptors ranking 24th in the league with a pace rating of 92.4 possessions per game, so the improvement of the Golden State defense over past seasons should be more obvious. The Warriors rank sixth in the NBA in field goal percentage allowed at 43.5 percent, and even while going 0-3 in the last three games against the East, Golden State still held those three foes to a cumulative 42.3 percent shooting.

Now the Raptors have improved offensively as the season has gone on, in fact averaging 104.4 points over their last seven games, which is significantly better than the 12th ranked 97.8 points they are averaging for the season. However, Toronto has now failed to reach 100 points in two straight games, albeit while winning the first of those contests in Orlando.

However, a home loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers Saturday on a three-point basket by Kyrie Irving with 0.7 seconds remaining is more disconcerting because that was vs. the team that is now dead last in the NBA in field goal percentage allowed at 47.1 percent.

Given the fairly slow pace that Toronto has played at this season, it may have a tough time reaching 100 points again vs. a much better defense, so with both offenses currently having issues, go ‘under’ in Toronto on Monday. 
 
[gameodds]5/136420/238-19-93-92-1096/us[/gameodds]

NBA Pick: Warriors, Raptors ‘under’ 202 (-105)

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