Game 5 of the NBA Finals takes place tonight and I will have a free pick in the game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors, which will take place at Oracle Arena in Oakland, California. The game has a start time of 8:00 pm (Eastern) and will be televised on ABC. Current Vegas betting odds have the Warriors listed as 9 point favorites, while the total is set at 195.
Analysis: The Cleveland Cavaliers had a 2-1 lead in this series, but they really used a lot of energy in taking that lead and it cost them in game 4 as they were very gassed in the blowout loss. The Cavs are really hoping that the extra day off will help their tired legs. Still this will be a tough series for the Cavs to win as they just don't have the depth to make it happen. Cleveland has gone 15-4 ATS in their last 19 vs. the Western Conference, and 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games playing on 2 days rest. The Cavaliers have been a solid offensive team on the road this year, scoring 101.8 ppg on 44.1% shooting overall and 34.5% shooting from long range. Defensively on the road the Cavs have allowed 99.4 ppg on 46.1% shooting overall and 32.0% shooting from long range.
The Warriors have been the best team in the NBA this year, but they really did look out of sorts in losing games 2 and 3. Well in game 4 they got their mojo back with an easy win, but it may have been more about the fact that they were playing a tired team than it was the fact that they did many things right. Still the Warriors are clearly the better team with the better depth and that should help them eventually walk away with the NBA Title. Golden State has gone 20-5-1 ATS in their last 26 games playing on 2 days rest, but just 1-7 ATS in their last 8 Sunday games. The Warriors have scored 110.8 ppg on 48.8% shooting overall and 40.0% from long range at home this year. Defensively they have been decent at home as they have allowed just 97.7 ppg on 42.9% shooting overall and 33.4% shooting from long range.
Pick: I will look to the Under in this game. The Cavs just aren't shooting the ball well right now and the Warriors have been playing excellent defense in this series, which should really keep the scoring down in this one once again. The Cavs don't want to tire themselves out as game 6 will be on short rest, so i really look for them to slow the pace just like they have all series and that should keep the scoring in the 180s.
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Free Best Bet: Bet Against the Best--Fade LeBron in the NBA Finals
He may be the best in the game but if you want a great best bet for the NBA Finals, pro bettor Steve Fezzik says you should bet the under on LeBron James' individual in Game 3 against Golden State and beyond. He had a great opening two games, but Fezzik and pro handicapper Teddy Covers offer several reasons why LBJ can't keep up his superhuman performance.