“The Golden State Warriors head into Game 2 on Tuesday as double-digit home favorites again (-14 points), even when they failed to cover the spread in Game 1 as 10-point favorite. This seems like a large margin for some NBA fans, but keep in mind that San Antonio’s star Kawhi Leonard still doubtful for the contest and that can make a big difference this time.” — MyBookie line manager David Strauss.
With the talk of Zaza Pachulia being a potentially dirty player during his fracas with Kawhi Leonard taking over the internet. Along with the questionable deployment (and accumulation of flagrant fouls + technical fouls) of players like Draymond Green, Matt Barnes and Zaza over the last few years, it’s easy to forget that the Golden State Warriors went full Supernova (once again) in their epic comeback over the San Antonio Spurs in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals.
Yes, Steph Curry and Kevin Durant put up 74 in the victory, but it was the execution in the clutch moments that broke the Spurs back in the series opener. (Well, along with that whole Kawhi ankle thing.)
Let me take the time now to highlight the great work of Dane Carbaugh and the work he’s doing on YouTube on NBA Playbook. (Give the man a subscribe click) Over on the channel, he breaks down the technicalities of winning basketball in a fun and simple fashion. Earlier, he highlighted a set the Warriors have been using for years now but came through in the best moments for the Dubs when things got tight.
It’s the constant conundrum of the Warriors, as the threat of Steph and Klay Thompson in the corner doing nothing can have a huge effect on the defense. Add to the fact that KD’s running off of screens puts that same defense in a tizzy. Add to that fact that Draymond’s ability to be the trigger means that Shaun Livingston can get open cuts to the rim and yam on defenders who have to decide what is the lesser of two (or three, or four) evils in a split-second on a given play.
Knowing Gregg Popovich and how he’s been seething for the last 36 hours, he’ll have a counter for this. What it is? I have no idea, but this play will be run again, and the chess match will be fun to watch.
Game Odds by MyBookie
Warriors vs. Spurs, Game 2
San Antonio Spurs +14-110
Golden State Warriors -14-110
209½ O-110 / U-110
Eddie Maisonet is the founder and editor emeritus of The Sports Fan Journal. Currently, he serves as an associate editor for ESPN.com. He is an unabashed Russell Westbrook and Barry Switzer apologist, owns over 100 fitteds and snapbacks, and lives by Reggie Jackson’s famous quote, “I am the straw that stirs the drink.”