Game 1, Monday May 14, 9:00 PM EST at Toyota Center Houston, TX
The defending champions, the Golden State Warriors, took care of the New Orleans Pelicans in five games in their last NBA playoff series and they have star Stephen Curry back for this epic duel with the Houston Rockets.
Don’t look for many defensive low-scoring games in this series, as the Warriors are the highest scoring team in the league and the Rockets are just behind them, ranking 2nd in ppg.
The Houston Rockets beat the Utah Jazz in five games in their last playoff series and they held the Jazz to under 93 points in two of the last three games. However, Utah is not a high scoring team and the Rockets’ D will have their hands full facing the dynamic Warriors.
The Rockets beat the Warriors in two of three games in the regular season and the lone win by Golden State was in Houston.
No secret that the Rockets have to play solid defense facing Curry, Kevin Durant, and Klay Thomson. These guys will get their points, but Houston has to keep them from shooting a high FG% and they really have to keep them from hitting the 3-ball.
Like the Rockets have to defend the Big 3, the Warriors also have to focus on the Houston backcourt duo of Chris Paul and James Harden. Paul went for 41 points in the Game 5 win over Utah and while Harden only had 18 points on 7/22 shooting missing six of his seven 3-pointers, the Rockets still won by 10 points.
Harden and Paul will need help in the scoring department from the likes of Clint Capela and Eric Gordon coming off the bench.
Draymond Green’s defense will be key in this game and the series, but Houston also has to keep tabs on him when the Warriors have the rock. In the Game 5 closeout win over Utah he went for 19 points and also had 14 boards and nine assists.
The Warriors are not known for their defense and in the three games facing the Rockets this season they allowed them to average 117.3 ppg. However, with Curry back the Warriors are back to firing on all cylinders, so they can, obviously, win if the game becomes a shootout.
Golden State key betting trends
- Golden State is 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games
- Golden State is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games after a win
- Golden State has an Under record of 5-1 in their last 6 road games
- Golden State is 11-5 ATS in their last 16 games against Houston
- Golden State is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games against Houston
Houston key betting trends
- Houston is 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games
- Houston is 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games after allowing at least 100 points in their previous game
- In the last 10 games between these teams the Under record is 7-3.
- In the last 6 games between these teams in Houston the Under record is 5-1.
Rockets vs. Warriors Game 1 prediction
The Rockets are at home and playing with a ton of confidence, but with Curry back the Warriors are the pick in this game at Bovada. They will light up the scoreboard and in a high scoring Game 1 Golden State will get the W and take a 1-0 series lead.
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