Through the opening weekend of the NBA Playoffs, hailed as one of the most “wide-open” in history, things are pretty much status-quo. Seven of the eight home teams won, most won with some breathing room to spare and covered the spread, and the only road winner was the fifth-seeded Wizards beating the Raptors in overtime. If the series truly doesn’t start until the road team wins, than this year’s playoffs have barely begun.
Fortunately, we have begun with a 2-0 mark in the postseason, nabbing an easy victory last night as the Clippers took care of the Spurs far easier than I thought in the opening game of the best first round series in years. I would caution against dismissing the Spurs after one road game, but it is clear the Clippers have a great chance to win this series and make a deep postseason run.
So can road teams make a dent in some series tonight or will home faves continue to roll? Let’s dive in to today free pick.
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Today’s Free Pick:
New Orleans Pelicans at Golden State Warriors -12 (Total: 205)
We notched a winner in the first game of this series with the total sneaking over by just a single point. It would have been a tough loss to swallow given the Warriors uncharacteristic shooting woes from the foul line. The Dubs missed ____ free throws and Steph Curry missed three himself – a normal month’s worth for him, and Anthony Davis scored 20 of his 35 points in the fourth quarter. All that action made the game close enough for the Pelicans to cover by a bucket after erasing a 25 point deficit. I am not sure tonight will be quite as close.
The Warriors don’t miss free throws. They left a ton of points on the board last game that I imagine they’ll capitalize on tonight. Look for them to score in the 110-plus range tonight at home. Meanwhile, I like the Pelicans to hang around and at least ride Anthony Davis to competitiveness.
Three of these last four games have gone over and I think tonight makes it four of five.
J’Rue Holiday’s return is a welcome addition for the Pelicans last in the season, but I’m not sure it does much to slow down Steph Curry, who scored 35 points despite missing some free throws and other shots he normally makes. Look for the Splash Brothers to play big and for the tempo to help this total once again sneak over.