Golden State is the largest NBA Finals favourite since the 2001 Los Angeles Lakers. Can LeBron James and his cast of castoffs keep things competitive?
NBA Finals Point Spread and Betting Analysis
The Cleveland Cavaliers clawed and scratched their way to the Finals, but they cost their backers a lot of money along the way. The Land is 39-60-1 against the spread in regular season and playoff games combined to put the club in last place in ATS win rate (39.1 percent).
It’s not all bad news for Cleveland supporters. They still have the best player in the world in LeBron James and the Cavs went 14-7 ATS in games as road underdogs this year.
The Warriors were big underachievers at the betting window too. The defending champions are 42-56-1 ATS in all games and needed seven games to get past a Houston side missing Chris Paul in Games 6 and 7. Golden State is 19-22-1 ATS in its last 42 games as double-digit favourites and 20-27-1 in its last 48 home dates.
Nearly 60 percent of Sports Interaction customers are backing the Warriors to cover as 12-point faves while 77 percent expect the game to go under the 214.5-point total. Oddsmakers expect this series to be over in a hurry. Golden State is a -661 favourite to win the NBA title while the Cavaliers are +460 underdogs to pull off the upset on the SIA futures board. The Warriors winning in five games is the most likely outcome (+167) while the Cavaliers winning in a sweep is paying +13,700.
The Cavs looked outmatched against the Warriors a year ago, and that was when Kyrie Irving was still in Cleveland. This year’s matchup has a similar feel to the 2015 Finals when Irving was lost for the series after breaking his kneecap in Game 1. The Cavaliers got up two games to one that year, but that was before Golden State added Kevin Durant.
This time around LBJ might have to do even more because of the iffy status surrounding All-Star Kevin Love. The big man is still going through the concussion protocol and hasn’t played since the opening minutes of Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals.
He’s the Cavs’ second-leading scorer and the Under is 14-9 in the 23 games he missed this season. Cleveland totaled just 89 points in its Game 7 victory against the Celtics.
Golden State Warriors
Golden State enters the series with all four of its All-Stars healthy and rolling, but the loss of Andre Iguodala is having an impact. The veteran wing is the Warriors’ first choice defender against LeBron James, but he hasn’t played since Game 3 of the Western Conference finals due to a knee injury.
The under is 9-1 in the Warriors’ last 10 games and 11-5-1 in their 17 postseason games.
Cavaliers vs. Warriors Game 1 Prediction
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