The Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors are on a collision course to meet in the NBA Finals for a third straight year. Oddsmakers are giving it nearly a 70 percent chance.
No two teams have squared off in the NBA Finals three times in a row. The Cavaliers and Warriors are convincing most, including oddsmakers, it’s going to happen this year. Online sportsbook 5Dimes lists the potential title-series matchup as odds-on at -235. Too short a price? Not if factoring in recent playoff performance.
Both Golden State and Cleveland are undefeated this postseason. The Cavs swept the Pacers and Raptors through the first two rounds, tipping off -5.8 favorites on average. LeBron James and company are covering the number by 3.8 points per game. The offense is rolling, scoring 114.5 points per game on 49.0 percent shooting. The unit is particularly hot from downtown, going 115-of-265 (43 percent) from the 3-point area.
The Warriors are 8-point chalk to sweep the Jazz on Monday night. The Western Conference top-seed toasted the Trail Blazers 4-0 in the first round. After posting the fourth best average margin of victory in league history during the regular season, the Warriors are going off -10.6 favorites on average. They are covering the number by 4.5 points per game. Stellar defense is leading the way. Golden State is holding opponents to 99.3 points per game on 41.3 percent shooting.
How dominant have these two teams been in the postseason in recent years? Since 2014, the Warriors and Cavs are a combined 63-12 SU and 44-30-1 ATS when not facing each other. Cleveland is 32-4 SU overall, losing just one game at Quicken Loans Arena. It has tipped an underdog just four times (3-1 SU and ATS). Golden State, meanwhile, is 31-8 SU, losing just a pair at Oracle Arena. Six of the eight defeats have come in seven games as a short-priced favorite of 4.5 points or less. The Warriors have gone off even money and as the underdog once.
Here’s a look at the remaining top five NBA Finals series betting choices as offered at 5Dimes: Celtics vs. Warriors (+445), Cavaliers vs. Spurs (+1155), Cavaliers vs. Rockets (+2350), and Celtics vs. Spurs (+4675).
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