The Golden State Warriors and the Portland Trail Blazers meet in game one of the Western Conference Finals this evening. The Warriors are coming in with a lot of momentum and more rest than the Blazers are coming off of. The Warriors were 57-25 this season while the Blazers were 53-29 in the regular season.
The Blazers and the Warriors are a perfect matchup due to the hype surrounding both teams. The Blazers are the story of the NBA playoffs as they got past both the Spurs and Nuggets in seven games. The Warriors are hot right now after they got past a Rockets team that game them a run.
The Warriors did lose Kevin Durant in that series and it is unlikely he plays in the first two games of this series.
The Warriors are 7.5 point favourites in game one and the over / under is 219 points with Intertops.
Warriors Look for Strong Start
The Warriors are really needing a game one win against the Blazers. After losing Kevin Durant for the foreseeable future, the Warriors cast really stepped up. Granted, they have won rings without Durant but he is an integral part of the team. Stephen Curry is back to being the man, and that is a role that he loves.
If Curry has an off-game Klay Thompson and Draymond Green can help back him up. Durant is a key part of the team but he isn’t the only part. Curry had a huge game in the series clincher and Thompson hit a late shot to seal the game. I really like the makeup of the Warriors team without Durant and think that they’ll still win the series as they can freely play a bit better now.
Blazers Seek to Win Third in a Row
The Blazers are riding a ton of momentum and are feeling very good about the spot they are in having won two games in a row against the Nuggets in convincing fashion. The Blazers are led by Damien Lillard with 25.8 points a game this season.
This past series Lillard cooled off and it was the bench and CJ McCollum that picked up the slack. Against the Warriors that can’t happen because the Warriors aren’t going to have four off nights in a row. The Blazers defense has been solid this year and it is going to have to be solid once again.
Warriors Cruise at Home
The Warriors are hearing a lot of talk about how they are done for because Durant is hurt. They have shown that they are able to win without him and they are going to continue to do so. I believe that this is going to be a quick series because the Blazers just don’t have the weapons to hang with the Warriors.
Another factor is the experience in the postseason. The Warriors have a ton of it, while Portland does not. That is going to come into play early in the series, and most definitely for Game 1. I think they’ll be close games, but I don’t see the Warriors losing many, if any at all.
In this one I would take the Warriors and the over in a highly contested game one.