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Spurs at Warriors, Game 3

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Chicago vs. Miami

On Wednesday, the Warriors evened up their second-round series with San Antonio with a 100-91 triumph in Game 2 as eight-point underdogs. The win snapped a 30-game road losing skid to the Spurs, and certainly boosted the confidence of this young energetic team.

Point guard Stephen Curry garners the majority of attention in Golden State but it was his backcourt teammate Klay Thompson who stole the show. The former Washington State standout scored 29 points in the first half as he connected on 8-of-9 from 3-point land.

Golden State led 28-23 after the first quarter and 62-43 at the break. Similar to Game 1, the Warriors had another second-half drought and San Antonio cut the lead to 11 points heading into the final quarter. The game slowed down in the last 12 minutes and the Warriors held on for the road win and cover.

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Thompson led all players with career-high 34 points and he pulled down 14 rebounds as well. Curry posted 22 points, which was a big drop from his 44-point effort in Game 1.

When you look at the numbers, San Antonio is fortunate to have this series tied after two games. The Spurs were outrebounded in the first two installments and they only shot 43 and 39 percent from the field.

In Game 2 San Antonio was just 5-of-21 (24%) from 3-point land, which was far below their season average of 37.6 percent. Make a note that Golden State has left a lot of points off the board in this series, going 30-of-48 (63%) from the free throw line. Center Andrew Bogut (40%) has been the biggest culprit for the Warriors inability to cash from the stripe so far.

After two games, a lot of pundits are asking themselves are the Warriors for real or is San Antonio just not playing well? According to the oddsmakers, they’re buying into Golden State and so is the betting public.  

CRIS, a major offshore outfit, opened San Antonio as a one-point road favorite for Game 3 but the money quickly came in on Golden State, who is now a 2 ½-point favorite.

The Warriors have covered all eight games in the playoffs and they’re currently on an 11-0 run against the spread when you include the final week of the regular season.

During this run, Golden State has gone 4-0 both SU and ATS at Oracle Arena, which includes a 116-106 regular season win on Apr. 15 against San Antonio, who rested its starters for this affair. Against Denver in the first round, the Warriors scored 110, 115 and 92 points and two of their wins came by four points or less.

San Antonio cruised past the Los Angeles Lakers in the first round and Greg Popovich’s team looked much better on the road. The Spurs walloped the short-handed Lakers by a combined 51 points (120-89, 103-82) in the two victories.

VegasInsider.com handicapper Brian Edwards believes that Game 3 could come down to role players. He explained, “Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili are expending a lot of energy defending Curry and Thompson, so San Antonio needs somebody to step up offensively. Danny Green was that guy in Game 1, scoring 22 points on 6-of-9 shooting from 3-point range. However, he was only 4-of-12 from the field in Game 2. The Spurs will need Green to hit 3's at Oracle Arena.” 

The Spurs hit 13 bombs from downtown in Game 1 and just five 3-pointers in Wednesday’s loss. The drop off from downtown could be attributed to the play in the paint, in particular Bogut’s size against Duncan. Golden State doesn’t need to double-team the All-Star, which leaves the Spurs sharpshooters guarded on the perimeter. If Bogut does get into foul trouble, San Antonio’s outside game will have plenty of opportunities.

Prior to Game 1, the Warriors were listed as high as 5/1 underdogs on the series price to beat San Antonio in the best-of-seven battle. Now that the series is tied, Sportsbook.ag has San Antonio listed as a 5/8 favorite (Bet $160 to win $100) over Golden State (+140) despite losing home-court advantage.

Sportsbook.ag has also updated their Exact Game Props on this series.

5 Games Spurs Win (5/2)
5 Games Warriors Win (10/1)
6 Games Spurs Win (3/1)
6 Games Warriors Win (4/1)
7 Games Spurs Win (2/1)
7 Games Warriors Win (6/1)


The total in Game 2 closed at 205 and if wasn’t for a 36-point fourth quarter between the pair, we probably would’ve saw the ‘over’ improve to 2-0 in this series.

For Game 3, the total is hovering around 203 points and the ‘over’ could be a good lean when you look ahead to Game 4, which takes place on Sunday. The fourth installment is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. ET, which will be a 12:30 p.m. PT start in the Bay Area. We mention that because the Warriors haven’t played a game this early all season at home.

When you consider that Wednesday’s game was on pace to go ‘over’ the number prior to the drought in the fourth quarter, total players could get a shootout on Friday with the late start.

ESPN will provide national coverage at 10:35 p.m. ET.

Chris David can be reached at cdavid@vegasinsider.com
 
 

  
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