Game 2 on Sunday is a "must-win" for Golden State. If they lose another game at home, the Warriors are in serious trouble because the NBA Finals move to Boston, which is where the Celtics have been phenomenal all season long.
Most sports bettors understand what's known as the "rebound theory."
The assumption is that good teams bounce back following a bad game or embarrassing situation at their next opportunity. The Golden State Warriors had a bad game and suffered an embarrassing situation two nights ago. They blew a 14-point lead and were utterly destroyed in the 4th quarter by the Boston Celtics, who rose from the dead and delivered a shocking 120-108 upset victory.
Warriors superstar Stephen Curry got off to a great start and scored 21 points, including six three pointers, just in the first quarter. However, the Celtics came back from multiple double-digit deficits and escaped with the upset. Boston, led by Al Horford’s 26 points on 9-of-12 shooting, dominated the fourth quarter. The Celtics outscored the Warriors 40-16 in the final frame and are now favored to win the series.
The question is -- will the favourite follow the rebound theory script, or instead might we see the underdog deliver another win (and cover)?
We'll find out on Sunday night in Game 2 of the NBA Finals. Tip off is at 5:00 pm PST in San Francisco.
According to Spreads.ca, the Warriors are favoured by 4 points. The over/under is 215.5 points.
One Bold Prediction: We don't usually quote other sports sites, but according to analytics at ESPN, the Celtics have a 59 percent chance to win the game. The site's Basketball Power Index gives the Warriors only a 41 percent chance to win.
Another Bold Prediction: According to FiveThirtyEight.com, the Celtics have a 57 percent win probability. The site gives the Warriors a 43 percent win probability in Game 2 of the NBA Finals.
Prediction (powered by Pointspreads.ca):
Analytics supplied by ESPN and the popular site Five-Thirty-Eight say the Celtics have a 57 per cent chance to win Game 2. That's stunning. It's tough to go against such convincing data, plus we're getting points if we take Boston.
What we can't measure in this situation is the Warriors' heart and the pulse of a championship-contending team. There has to be something deep in the tank for Golden State that will fuel their absolute best effort in Game 2.
Credit Boston, which shook the Warriors to their core. Now that Golden State has won that attention and respect, we think the home favourites will deliver.
Laying -4 is a reasonable number to give.
So, we are betting "yes" on the rebound theory.