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How will Warriors respond as 4.5-point home favorites over the Raptors in game 4?

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Golden State is down in the series but likely to have Klay Thompson back for a critical game four at Oracle Arena.

2019 NBA Finals - Game Three
Draymond Green said he needs to and will play better.
Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Will game four of the 2019 NBA Finals be the Golden State Warriors’ final game at Oracle Arena?

The Dubs will need better defensive effort in game four if they want a chance at another home game.

Here we discuss the game four odds and analysis from a betting perspective.

When: Friday June 7th, 2019 at 6:00pm PST

Where: Oracle Arena, Oakland, California

TV: ABC

Line: Warriors -4.5, o/u 215

Injuries: Klay Thompson (hamstring) is probable, Kevon Looney (collarbone) is questionable and Kevin Durant (calf) is out for the Warriors.

Toronto Raptors

Each Toronto Raptor starter scored at least seventeen points and shot at least .500 from the field, and just as they had in game one, the Raptors took advantage of the Warriors’ poor defensive effort to have their way on offense, shooting .524 from the field and .447 from three-point range, tying an NBA record for the most three-pointers made by a road-team in the Finals with seventeen.

Toronto is led by Kawhi Leonard with 30.9 points, 1.5 steals and 9.0 rebounds per game, Kyle Lowry with 6.5 assists per game and Marc Gasol with 1.2 blocks per game in the playoffs.

2019 NBA Finals - Game Three
Kyle Lowry’s solid game three effort was overshadowed by the incident with Mark Stevens.
Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

The Raptors are 49-53-1 against the spread (ATS), 54-48-1 to the over/under, 34-36 ATS after a win, 12-8 ATS as an away underdog, 29-33-1 ATS with one day off, 34-28-1 to the over/under with one day off, 39-31-1 to the over/under after a win and 15-15-1 to the over/under as an away underdog this season.

Toronto has an offensive rating of 109.6, defensive rating of 104.0, pace factor of 96.1 and are 12-9 ATS and 8-13 to the over/under in the playoffs, 2-1 ATS and 2-1 to the over/under in this series so far.

Golden State Warriors

Lackadaisical defensive effort has been at the root of every embarrassing home loss this season for the Warriors and game three of these Finals was no different.

The 123 points allowed by the Warriors in game three were the most given up in any Finals game at Oracle under Steve Kerr and the Warriors defensive rating in these playoffs of 111.7 is by far their worst of any over the past five years, compared to 103.6 in 2018, 105.5 in 2017, 106.1 in 2016 and 100.5 in 2015.

The Warriors’ Jekyll and Hyde defensive character had been identified as their potential weakness even prior to losing Klay Thompson and Kevon Looney to injury, and though not having them adversely affected their defense in game three, it was no excuse for the active Warriors to allow the Raptors to move through them like Swiss cheese and score with video-game-like efficiency.

Among players most likely active for game four, the Warriors are led by Stephen Curry with 28.5 points per game, Draymond Green with 9.7 rebounds, 8.1 assists and 1.5 blocks per game, tied with Klay Thompson with 1.4 steals per game in the playoffs so far.

2019 NBA Finals - Game Three
Steph Curry gave his all in game three.
Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The Dubs are 43-56-2 ATS, 50-51 to the over/under, 14-16 ATS after a loss, 19-29-1 ATS as a home favorite, 26-31-1 ATS with one day off, 21-28 to the over/under as a home favorite, 26-32 to the over/under with one day of rest and 11-19 to the over/under after a win this season.

Golden State has an offensive rating of 116.4, defensive rating of 111.7, pace factor of 98.5 and are 8-10-1 ATS, 12-7 to the over/under in the playoffs, 1-2 ATS and 2-1 to the over/under in this series so far.

Analysis

The Warriors have been remarkably consistent in terms of offensive production, scoring exactly 109 points in each of the first three games of these NBA Finals, which is still well below their average offensive rating in these playoffs and likely a testament to the Raptors’ consistency on defense.

What’s been inconsistent and the bane of the Warriors’ playoff existence this year has been lax and slow-to-respond defensive effort and they will live or die by their defensive effort in game four and in these Finals.

When contemplating a wager on game four, one should consider whether they anticipate the Warriors with a healthy Klay Thompson to bounce back with a vengeance. If the Warriors fight back with the heart of a champion, we would expect it to most likely manifest as improved defensive effort, and given how the Raptors’ defense has been consistent all series, we would lean toward under 215 points in game four. Bettors who are planning on taking the under should think about taking it sooner rather than later, since the line opened at 216 and has already dropped a full point, and over bettors might get a better number if they wait.

While we fully expect the Warriors to come out strong in game four, we are hesitant to consider betting on the Warriors in the first half given how they have been outscored in the first half and first quarter of every game in this series so far, though we see the Warriors having a better chance at covering the first quarter than the first half given the drop-off we’ve seen in the Warriors’ thin second units.

We predict that the Warriors win game four, but are still wary of laying 4.5-points due to the Warriors’ poor ATS record at home and the amount of fight in these Raptors, not to mention the fact that sharp money seems to be coming in on Toronto, moving a line that opened as Warriors -5.5 all the way down to -4.5 in less than 24 hours. Bettors who are planning on laying the points with the Dubs might consider waiting as this line could shrink even more if the public takes the underdog as they did in game three.

With Klay playing without pain or restrictions, the Warriors have the capacity to flip the switch as demonstrated in their third quarter run in game two and, as such, we again see the best value in waiting to live bet the game after tip-off. If the Warriors go down by any significant amount of points in the first half as they have in each of the first three games of this series, we would then take the live spread or moneyline at better odds.

Poll

What is your best bet for Warriors vs. Raptors on 6/7/19 in game 4?

This poll is closed

  • 34%
    Warriors -4.5
    (167 votes)
  • 40%
    Raptors +4.5
    (199 votes)
  • 17%
    Over 215
    (84 votes)
  • 8%
    Under 215
    (40 votes)
490 votes total Vote Now