After coming back from the near-dead to beat the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals, the Golden State Warriors have opened as big favorites for their title defense against the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Warriors are –200 at press time to win the series, and they’re 6-point home favorites for Thursday’s opener, starting at 9 PM ET on ABC.
The Cavaliers were surprisingly competitive during last year’s NBA Finals – at least in the beginning. Despite season-ending injuries to Kevin Love, then Kyrie Irving, Cleveland took a 2-1 straight up and against the spread lead over the Dubs before running out of gas and dropping the last three games. Love and Irving are both healthy now, and the Cavs cruise into Thursday’s game at 12-2 SU and 9-5 ATS during these playoffs.
Meanwhile, it looks like the Warriors (12-5 SU, 11-6 ATS) are back in fine form after sweeping their last three games against Oklahoma City. Two-time and reigning league MVP Stephen Curry buried the Thunder with 36 points in Game 7, shooting 13-of-24 from the floor and 7-of-12 from long range in arguably his best game of the postseason. Golden State is a value pick as long as Curry stays healthy.