NBA Pick: Warriors Offense To Stay Hot & Smoke Blazers In Game 2

Jay Pryce

Tuesday, May 3, 2016 2:00 PM GMT

Will The Blazers turn their fortunes around at Oracle Arena when they square off with the Warriors in Game 2 of the Western Conference Semifinals? Here's your free NBA pick.

Portland Trail Blazers (48-41 SU, 47-39-3 ATS)
The Warriors own the Trail Blazers over the last decade or so. In their last 42 matchups, Portland is just 13-29 SU and 10-31-1 ATS. At Oracle Arena, their record is even more abysmal, going 3-19 SU and ATS during this span.

A 118-106 blowout by the East Bay franchise in Game 1 of the West semifinals should not have come as a shock then, even with reigning MVP Stephen Curry out for the Warriors. Golden State jumped on the visitors early, going up 37-17 in the first quarter on 15 fast-break points to the Trail Blazers' zero. If Portland wishes to turn their fortunes around, it will need a better start tonight.

For Portland to fancy a win, Damian Lillard must be improved from the floor. Although the Trail Blazers’ leading scorer finished with 30 points in the opener, he posted an ugly 31 percent field goal percentage off the heels of a horrid 2-for-13 run to start the game. Portland is 28-15 SU and 27-16 ATS when the star point guard shoots better than 40 percent on the night. He’s accomplished this just twice in eight lifetime visits to East Bay. Golden State's 41.8 percent allowed field goal percentage to point guards in the regular season ranked in the top 10 for lowest in the NBA.

The Trail Blazers have to find a way to outperform Golden State from the 3-point area. With most of their scoring coming from the backcourt, the team relies on the three heavily. It’s 28.6 attempts and 10.5 made ranked fifth and fourth respectively in the league. When Portland shoots better from downtown then their opponents this season, it is 32-10 SU and 28-13-1 ATS (13-8 SU and 14-7 ATS as the dog). Golden State, meanwhile, is 14-7 SU and 2-18-1 ATS when outdone percentage-wise from the area—though it’s happened only 10 times at Oracle Arena this year. 


Golden State Warriors (78-10 SU, 47-37-4 ATS)
No Curry, no problem. Golden State adjusted well without their leading scorer, outscoring opponents by 80 points through the first seven quarters without Curry in the lineup.

Fellow “Splash Brother” Klay Thompson is picking up much of the slack, showing off his shooting prowess with 28.8 points per game in the four minus Curry this postseason. Thompson, in fact, set an NBA playoff record after draining seven 3-pointers in Game 1, becoming the first player to make seven treys or more in three straight postseason games.

To be fair, it has been a complete team effort. Head coach Steve Kerr’s squad is moving the ball around well, patiently finding open looks nearly every time down the court. It is averaging 26.8 assists per game with the sharpshooter out. All five starters scored in double digits in Game 1, topped off by Draymond Green’s second career postseason triple-double (23 points, 13 rebounds, and 11 assists).

 

Final Analysis
The Warriors' offense is a joy to watch when it is clicking: snappy passes, beautiful ball movement and soaring long-range jumpers. Headed into tonight, Kerr’s unit is certainly in sync after the display it’s put on the last two games. Expect the points to come in bunches again. Golden State has averaged 9.0 points better as a team the betting market projects in their last five home games against Portland. With this in mind, the Warriors’ team total of 112 points are a bit light on NBA Odds. We will make Golden State TT OVER 112 the free NBA pick for tonight, and bank on the home team covering the spread once again. 

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Free NBA Pick: Warriors -9 -105 & TT Over 112
Best Line Offered: at Heritage
NBA Record: 63-43-1 (-107); NBA Playoffs: 8-2 (-109)