Golden State Warriors will look to finish off the Houston Rockets in game 5, with the series shifting back to Oakland. Join us as we breakdown the NBA odds and serve up our NBA picks.
Houston Rockets Live Another Day
Houston Rockets clinched game 4. So they live another day in the Western Conference Finals. But with the series shifting to Oakland and the Golden State Warriors up 3-1 in the series, their days are numbered. If the NBA odds were any indication, tonight could be their last sojourn in the NBA Playoffs as the Warriors look to clinch the series with home court advantage.
As it is, the Warriors are runaway favourites to win outright at -600 NBA odds while the Rockets are matched at staggering +400 NBA odds. To say the odds are stacked against them is to put it mildly. NBA trends are also against them as no team in the NBA has managed to claw its way back out of a 3-0 sinkhole.
The Rockets may well fancy their chances despite the odds and NBA trends. After all, they did reel off three straight wins in the Western Conference semi-finals, coming from 1-3 down to edge the LA Clippers 4-3 in game 7. What's a four-game winning streak but one more game, really.
It's a notional shot, though. In reality the probability is slim. The Golden State Warriors have lost just three games at home, two in the regular season and one in the NBA playoffs. That amounts to a 93.75 winning percentage (45-3 SU). Put another way, the Rockets have about a 6.25% chance of winning game 5. That's not a whole lot to put your money down on, is it?
Golden State Warriors Look To Clinch Series
The Golden State Warriors are one game away from the NBA Finals and a date with the Cleveland Cavaliers. A date that seemed to preordained right from the start when odds makers went to press with NBA odds to win outright at the end of the regular season. Both the Cavaliers and the Warriors were trading at the top of the NBA odds board, interchangeably in first and second place. It's the dream final, to be fair.
The Warriors slipped to a 128-115 loss in Houston in game 4, a game that saw James Harden burst out of the blocks and lift the Rockets to the victory behind a whopping 45 point performance. So much for suggesting the guy can't do it alone. There's us told.
The Rockets defied the NBA odds, coming through as the +170 underdogs and covering as the 5-point pups. This time around they are priced at double the NBA odds, at +400 to win outright and at +10.5-points against the spread. the underdog in straight up betting
If there's one thing the Rockets have going for them it's momentum right now after their big win in game 4. Whether they can harness that momentum into a road win at the Oracle remains to be seen. That said the Warriors can't take home advantage for granted. The first two games of this series were close, with the Warriors winning by four points in game 1 (110-106) and merely a point in game 2 (99-98). That's going to be both a source of encouragement for the Rockets and trepidation for the Warriors. Could they really lose their grip on this series?
NBA Betting Verdict
If the Western Conference semi-finals taught us one thing, it's not to count out the Houston Rockets. They underscored that notion with a series reviving win. Now, they must win game 5 if they are to prolong their postseason. It's not impossible given how close they played the Warriors in the first two games, not to mention how they rose to the challenge two nights ago.
The reality is they are faced with a tough prospect tonight in game 5: winning at the Oracle Arena where the Warriors have lost but a handful of games all season long. Indeed, the Oracle Arena is nigh the equivalent of Fort Knox, an impenetrable sanctuary where the Warriors rule supreme. What's more, even if they accomplish the feat tonight, they'll still have to do it one more time if they do somehow push this series into a game 7.
Those NBA bettors that are looking to bank on the Rockets to win outright could do no worse; this is a team worthy of its place in the Western Conference Finals. For our money, however, we're banking on the Warriors with our NBA picks to win this game outright at -600 SU NBA odds but the Rockets to keep it close.
NBA Picks: Warriors to win outright at -600; Rockets to cover +10.5