NBA Picks: Raptors are Gutsy Pick to Beat the Spread
Toronto Raptors at Golden State Picks
The Warriors are who we thought they were! Maybe slow down a little because even though the Warriors bounced back with a massive 133-103 shellacking of the Dallas Mavericks, it's still just the Mavericks. The Warriors dropped two of their first three games and allowed their opponents to average 117 points with 47.1 field goal percentage, unbecoming of the defending NBA champions. The Raptors will be live 12-point underdogs.
Coming off a loss against the Spurs, the Raptors are in the second game of their six-game West Coast road trip. Historically, the Raptors can't get over the Warriors winning only one game in their last ten meetings including dropping their last six games. The good news is the Raptors have only lost by double digits in two of their last five games at the Oracle and a 12-point spread is beatable.
In the Raptors' last five games in the Oracle, they lost by 10, 5, 21, 9, and 7. DeMar DeRozan was also injured during their 21-point loss. Teams like the Raptors play up to their competition. This will also be a high-scoring game as the over on the team totals has cashed 8 out of 10 times and betting the over is suggested. The Warriors should win in this spot but the Raptors are the better bet on the point spread.
Toronto Raptors at Golden State Warriors Preview
It's tough to bet for a team that is 1-9 and 3-6-1 ATS against the Warriors but the Raptors can deliver. A win is unlikely here but with news of three-time all-star DeRozan confirmed to play, their odds are even better even if they will be thin up front with both centers Jonas Valanciunas and Lucas Noguiera out.While this will present difficulties, the Raptors get a good excuse to roll out a small lineup.
The Raptors already ranked 7th in their pace and 8th in their offensive rating, which is ideal if they are to keep up with the Warriors. Without Valanciunas, they may have difficulty spacing the floor. Jakob Poeltl stepped up big time in JV's absence posting a double-double (10 points, 12 rebounds) against the Spurs.
Playing small ball and matching the Warriors' long-range scoring will be the key in this matchup. The Warriors rank dead-last in points in the paint with only 31.5 per cent of their points accounted from the inside. On the flipside, they rank second in percentage of points from three-points at 37.9. They also rank first in Assist Ratio (20.5), Effective Field Goal Percentage (EFG%) at 59.1, and True Shooting Percentage (TS%) at 59.1.
The Raptors aren't too shabby on offense ranking eighth and fourth in EFG and TS%, respectively but their Assist Ratio is only 17th. The team is still ironing out the wrinkles of their new offense. There is a danger for them to play inefficiently and get blown out quickly. Fortunately, the Raptors are one of the NBA's most effective defensive teams.
Toronto ranks third in defensive rating only allowing 92.7 points per game and is tied at seventh in surrendering points off of turnovers at 14.3. If they have a weakness on defense, it will be on rebounding. The Raptors are only 22nd and have a 75 per cent defensive rebounding percentage and are tied at 18th in allowing second chance points at 14.7 per game.
If the Raptors can't match the Warriors' offense, and they are unlikely to, they can make that up by limiting them to an extent. Their perimeter defense is on point but they'll need the likes of Poeltl, Norm Powell, and especially Serge Ibaka to contribute on defensive rebounds. The last thing the Raptors need are Warriors getting plenty of second chances.
The Raptors play hard and will keep the game from getting out-of-hand. But if betting them to cover 12 points is still daunting, try betting the totals at 229. Five of the Raptors' last seven games and seven of the Warriors' last eight have gone over the totals. The average total score for the last four games between the two have averaged 231.5 with the totals for their last two games registering 232 and 248 points.
The best place to bet the Raptors are on online sportsbooks available to Canadians. The point spread, money line, and team totals (over/under) are all standard betting offers with additional prop bets as well. A signup bonus of up to $250 is offered for new players making it always a good time to sign up and play.
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