Warriors vs. Jazz Odds
|Time||10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
The line wouldn’t indicate there’s much between these sides, but might there be? Let’s have a look at the numbers.
How Good is This Warriors Streak?
First thing’s first, let’s address the big absences for Golden State. Draymond Green will miss a 16 game in a row due to a back injury while Klay Thompson will sit here as he manages his Achilles. Andre Iguodala and Nemanja Bjelica are out as well, while Kevon Looney is questionable due to a quad injury.
Of course, the absence of Green (and others up there) hasn’t stopped Golden State from going on a nine-game winning streak. The Warriors are also 4-0 straight-up and 3-0-1 against the spread in the games Thompson has sat since his return. One of those games was a two-point win over Utah, where Golden State pushed as a two-point favorite.
When you take a closer look at the nine-game winning streak, it begins to lose a bit of its luster. For one, the competition that the Warriors have faced has not been all that good. They beat the Jazz back on Jan. 23 at home in a game Rudy Gobert was active for, and they also beat the Mavericks. Other than that, it’s been pretty bleak. Other wins have come over the Rockets (twice), Timberwolves, Nets, Spurs, Kings and Thunder. In that span of games, Golden State is also just 4-5 against the spread.
It is worth noting, however, that the Warriors shot just 31% from three in that previous meeting and wound up winning the game. While it helped that the Jazz shot 31.4%, you might chalk that up to Golden State’s top-five defense since going on the winning streak on Jan. 21.
Shorthanded Jazz Turning the Corner
Utah has picked up the slack over the last three games without Rudy Gobert, taking out the Nuggets, Nets and Knicks while covering in the latter two contests. That also has a lot to do with the fact that Donovan Mitchell returned for the Brooklyn game, — in two games he has averaged 25.5 points and 6.0 assists on 58.3% shooting and 47.1% from behind the arc. With Mitchell going off, it’s been hard to slow down the Jazz.
The Knicks made a decent attempt on Monday, though, in what was ultimately a losing effort. New York led for most of the second half until a huge comeback in the fourth quarter flipped the game on its head. The Knicks out-rebounded the Jazz 56-49, and Mitchell Robinson was able to control the game down low with 19 points and 21 rebounds. The Knicks also shot a poor 24.2% from 3-point range, falling victim to Utah’s elite defense.
On the other side of the coin, Utah was only able to convert on 25% of its looks from deep, though it did score a big win with a 46-40 advantage in points in the paint. When the shooting went cold, Mitchell was able to get inside the arc and make things happen at the rim.
The Warriors’ defense has been superb over the last week and change, but it’s been very difficult to deny the Jazz on the offensive end with Mitchell in the fold. The versatility he brings has been too much for opposing teams to overcome, and when the Jazz’s lethal shooting has cooled, they have been able to rely on him to carry the load offensively.
Golden State’s weakness inside could be its undoing here with Green out and Looney questionable. The key to the Knicks’ success on Monday was beating the Jazz inside without Gobert, but the Warriors aren’t as well-equipped to do this considering their injuries.
I’ll back the Jazz to pull out the win here at home over the Warriors who have struggled to get it done against quality opponents lately and whose ATS number over the nine-game winning streak tells a more important story.
Pick: Jazz -1.5 (up to -3)