Once again we're looking at a game that involves the Warriors. However, in this matchup I'm going to do something I haven't done all season and that is lay the points with the Warriors. It might be tempting to back OKC getting a decent amount of points. Is that really the right way to go?
NBA Pick: Warriors -8.5
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle
NBA odds makers have come out making Golden State a -8.5 favorite like at Pinnacle -105. This makes about the right amount of sense to me and just about where I would've set the line handicapping this game. Both of these teams have some similar statistics when we look at the matchups, but Golden State is simply the deeper team so for my NBA pick I believe they will win this game by double digits.
Oklahoma City Thunder
Oklahoma City is averaging 109.7 points per game while shooting 47.6% from the field, and allowing 101.6 points per game on 43.5% shooting from the field. On the season OKC is just 20-31 overall against the spread, and 6-16 on the road. The issue for me tonight is pretty simple when looking at OKC, in the past month they did not face one elite team in the league. Since the beginning of 2016, OKC's toughest three teams they played were Memphis, Dallas, and Miami, and to their credit they won those games.
Still, even being really excited to take on Golden State won't be enough, I believe the Warriors are at a much different level than the last time these teams faced each other last season. Offensively with Kevin Durant now looking healthy and of course the energizer bunny Russell Westbrook, this is a really good Thunder team that could possibly shake things up when the playoffs roll around. They rank third in the league in shooting efficiency, overall and two point shooting percentage, and effective field-goal percentage. They push tempo and are also good from inside, ranking third in points in the paint, and outside, averaging 35.8% from distance, ranking eighth. Despite their tempo, Defensively they have been good and rank third, fourth, and fifth in the NBA in opponent two point shooting percentage, opponent shooting efficiency, and opponent effective field-goal percentage respectively. Tonight though this is just a completely different monster, and the only thing I think could possibly help them cover this number is the fact that Golden State is just coming back from a road trip.
Golden State Warriors
Golden State is averaging 115.4 points per game while shooting 49.1% from the field, and allowing 102.7 points per game on 43% shooting from the field. On the season they are 30-18-1 overall against the spread, and 12-10 at home. I could write about this team forever, and they have simply have looked like one of the best teams of all time so far this season. Offensively they are the best team in the league and they rank first in shooting efficiency, two and three point shooting percentage, and effective field-goal percentage. They also rank first in three-pointers and overall field goals made per game. They could score in the paint and from distance, and they are almost impossible to stop. Defensively although they allow quite a few points per game, statistically they are one of the best in the league and rank first, second, and third in opponent three point shooting percentage, opponent effective field-goal percentage, and opponent overall shooting percentage and efficiency respectively. The only thing they do inefficiently is allow points in the paint, but that is more do to the style they force teams to get into as noted by how well they defend from the perimeter to the three-point line, ranking as one of the best in the league.
Odds makers have also set the total for this game extremely high so I think we all can expect a really up and down fun game. For one of your NBA picks I recommend to take Golden State to win by double digits. OKC has been really good this season but the step up in class today, compared to who they have faced in recent weeks, will be a bit too much for them.