#725 Golden State Warriorsvs.#726 San Antonio Spurs
Monday, May 5 2017, at 9:00pm EDT
Written by Chuck D
Golden State Warriors 78-15 (47-43 ATS) at San Antonio Spurs 69-28 (49-46 ATS)
When and Where: Monday, May 22, AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas 9:00pm EDT (ESPN)
spread: Golden State -12.5; Total: 216
When the Spurs opened up a 44-19 lead in Game 1 in Oakland, all talks of the Warriors sweeping their way to the NBA Finals were being put on hold. Of course, the rest is history. Kawhi Leonard was injured with his team up 23 and the squad could not hold off Golden State down the stretch. Leonard has not played since, and neither really, has San Antonio. After Saturday night’s 120-108 win, Golden State now leads the best-of-seven series 3-0, and will be looking to go for the jugular on Monday night in the Lone Star State. Leonard is not likely to play again, and the Warriors seem to be in prime position to win their third consecutive Western Conference Championship.
With a win on Monday night, Golden State will move to 12-0 on the postseason and clinch their third straight Western Conference title. Despite the domination, Warriors forward Draymond Green told reporters it is not so easy Japanesey, stating, “Nah, it’s not inevitable. We’ve lost a lead before, so we’ve got to come out on Monday and try to close this thing out.”
Kevin Durant took control in the third quarter, scoring 19 points on his way to a 33-point night. The all-star went 11-of-19 from the floor and has no shot over 50 percent in five straight contests. Stephen Curry is shooting 55.6 percent in the first three games of the series while also averaging 30 points. Shooting guard Klay Thompson scored 17 points. He had combined for 17 points in the first two games of the series. Center Zaza Pachulia, aka, the least popular guy in San Antonio since the Alamo, did not play in Game 3, and is listed for questionable for Monday night. Stephen Curry is officially listed at probable at this point, but that honestly just seems like a formality at this point.
Luck has not been in the corner of San Antonio this postseason. They lost veteran point guard Tony Parker for the rest of the season early in the playoffs. They had to finish off the Rockets without MVP Candidate Kawhi Leonard. They lost Leonard again in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals, and in their last outing, David Lee went down. Lee, a University of Florida alum, has been ruled out of the rest of the series, which looks like it will last one more game at this point. “You have to give everything you have for the next one,” San Antonio guard Manu Ginobili told reporters. “For us to win, we have to play at a 10 level, and (the Warriors) have to play at a seven. And we have to make them play a seven and play our best game.” Ginobli totaled 21 points off the bench in defeat.
LaMarcus Aldridge, who seemingly took off the regular season and most of the early postseason, has averaged 13 points on 11-of-28 shooting in the last two games. Head coach Gregg Popovich is not confident that that Leonard will be available on Monday and Lee will be out with a with a partial tear of his left patella tendon. The 39-year-old Ginobli will continue to be counted on as the series wind down. “The competitiveness was great,” Popovich told reporters after Game 3. “Every time you look up, you’re playing against four All-Stars, so you better be pretty perfect, and competitiveness-wise, I couldn’t ask for anything more. We turned it over too much, and we’ve got to make some more shots, but it’s a helluva team.”
Golden State is:
This line opened at -9, but has moved a full 3.5 points since then. Perhaps it was announcement that Leonard is likely to miss Game 4. Maybe it is just the totality of No Leonard, no Parker, and no Lee. The Spurs are walking wounded into Game 4, but they are still a very proud franchise, and you can expect them to do everything in their power to avoid the sweep, particularly in front of their home fans. Shorthanded or not, I like for San Antonio to come out and give it their all. It probably will not be enough to win, but it still should be enough to cover.
The last eight times these two teams met in San Antonio, the under has hit six of them. It is Game four and the Warriors are on the road with Curry listed as probable, so it stands to reason that there should not be a lot of points scored in this one. However, both of these teams trend so heavily towards the over that it is just too hard to pass up. The Over has hit the last four times that Golden State has participated in a basketball game. It is also 4-0 with the Warriors coming off of a straight up win. The Spurs have hit the over the last five times they played at home as well.
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Chuck Dowling is a 30-something University of Florida J-School alum that lives in his mother’s basement. Just kidding... there are no basements in Florida (the ground is too moist). He has been in the “biz” for his entire adult life and specializes in NCAA football and basketball, as well as soccer, boxing, and MMA. When not writing, Chuck moonlights as a high school athletics radio and internet-television broadcaster.