NBA betting market report: Daily picks, advice for Tuesday 5/24

By Jonathan Von Tobel  (Senior NBA Analyst) 

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Welcome to the daily NBA betting market report, your source for analysis on the betting lines for the day in professional hoops. For updates throughout the day follow me on Twitter, or check out The Edge daily at 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. PT.

All game lines via VSiN NBA Odds page.

Market Report for Tuesday, May 24

*Lines are opening numbers

Golden State Warriors at Dallas Mavericks (-1, 215.5)

Game 4: Warriors lead 3-0

It is downright impressive what the Golden State Warriors have done in this series.

They are 3-0 SU and ATS with a + 17.6 net rating in non-garbage time minutes, they have limited the Dallas Mavericks to just 105.5 points per 100 possessions and their performances in each of the last two games were representative of the gap between these two teams. In Game 2 they trailed by 17 points just 26 seconds into the third quarter and would go on to not only win but cover as well by limiting Dallas to 0.978 points per possession in the second half. On Sunday, they trailed by nine points with 3:58 left to go in the second quarter. The betting market had bet up the Mavericks to -3.5 thinking that it was the “spot” for a desperate team. Golden State proceeded to rip off a 10-0 run, led by a point at halftime and never trailed again. The Warriors are just a terrible matchup for the Mavericks, and we’ve seen this play out over the course of these three games, and there is little reason to expect anything less tonight.

Almost every conversation with Golden State must begin with its offense, but I want to start with its defense. As previously mentioned, the Mavericks have been able to do very little in this series against the Warriors’ defensive schemes. Steve Kerr has done a brilliant job with his defensive game plan of throwing the kitchen sink at Luka Doncic. One possession down the floor where Doncic is the primary ball-handler and Dallas will see a box-and-1 set, but on the next trip it will be primarily man. In single possessions Golden State will change its defense depending on who has the ball, going from man-to-man when Jalen Brunson is running the offense to a junk defense when Doncic has possession. The biggest difference has been in the second halves of these series, where the Warriors have limited the Mavericks to 0.993 points per possession while posting a + 33.3 net rating. That speaks to the coaching mismatch at play in this series, and that advantage has played out in every game thus far for Golden State.

The Warriors’ offense has been just as impressive against a once dominant defense. The Mavericks have allowed 123.1 points per 100 possessions in non-garbage time minutes through three games, 102.0 points per 100 plays in half-court settings and an opponent offensive rebounding rate of 29.3%. In fact, Golden State has grabbed 57.9% of available rebounds in this series! Dallas has not had an answer for Stephen Curry either, as he has averaged 28.0 points, 8.3 rebounds and 6.7 assists on 47.8% shooting from 3-point range in this series, and those assists are a result of him getting the ball out of his hands the times that Dallas tries to blitz screens or double him. Golden State seemingly has an answer for everything that the Mavericks have attempted to throw at them and it is why they are one win away from returning to the NBA Finals.

That is why I will back the Warriors tonight. I was clearly wrong in thinking that the series price of -250 was too large for Golden State and was wrong in backing Dallas the first two games of the series. The Warriors are clearly better than I and the market thought prior to the series, and this line translates to Golden State -7 at home, which is just a half-point adjustment from where we were in Games 1 and 2 of this series. The Warriors are motivated to make it back to the Finals yet again, and I do not expect a lackluster performance like the one they put up in Game 5 at Memphis. I expect Golden State to put its foot down and punch its ticket to the NBA Finals.

Play: Warriors (+ 1)

Best Bet Summary

Warriors (+ 1)

Season Record: 98-80-2

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