Utah Jazz vs. Golden State Warriors Game 1 Preview
Where: Oracle Arena – Oakland, CA
When: Tuesday, May 2, 2017, 10:30 PM ET
TV Broadcast: TNT
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Betting on the Utah Jazz (-110)
Utah went the distance—Game 7—before it finally eliminated the Clippers in a thrilling opening-round series. Hence, the Jazz are already at a disadvantage in terms of energy against the fresher legs of the Warriors, who swept Portland in their own first-round matchup.
To avoid that, Utah needs to stick to their defense-oriented playing style and avoid the temptation of playing Golden State’s up-tempo approach. The Jazz held the Clips below 100 points in all but one game during their best-of-seven series.
Also, Gordon Hayward has to keep being himself. He’s averaging 23.7 points in the playoffs thus far, including a 40-point effort in Game 3 versus LA. The same can be said for Joe Johnson, who’s been turning back the clock with his recent resurgence. He posted 15.7 points per game in the first round.
The Jazz are 2-8 SU and 3-7 ATS in their last 10 visits to Oracle Arena.
Betting on the Golden State Warriors (-110)
The Warriors beat Utah in two of three meetings in the regular season, with the lone loss happening at home on April 14. That should already be a sign that this series won’t be as easy in comparison to their previous series.
Reigning two-time MVP Stephen Curry is averaging nearly 30 points per game in this postseason, including 4.8 three-pointer a contest. But you can expect that number to decline against Utah’s steady defense.
Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Kevin Durant are going to have to play a bigger role offensively. Thompson only put up 18.8 points on 38.8 percent shooting in the series with the Blazers, while Green inflicts damage mostly, if not solely, on the defensive end.
As for Durant, he’s still not at his top form after coming back from a calf injury in their series-clinching win at Portland. He played just 20 minutes and put up 10 points.
Utah (-13.5) steals Game 1, 107-103.
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