NBA Odds, Preview, Prediction for Jazz vs. Warriors: How To Bet Matchup of Western Conference Powers (January 23)
Logan Riely/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Andrew Wiggins
- Utah and Golden State round out Sunday's NBA action.
- The Jazz and Warriors sit fourth and second, respectively, in the Western Conference, but Utah could be without some key players tonight.
- Jacob McKenna breaks down the game and gives his top pick, below.
Jazz vs. Warriors Odds
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The Utah Jazz will begin a short two-game road trip on Sunday night when they travel to California to take on the Warriors in a battle of two Western Conference heavyweights.
Utah has once again pieced together a solid season, entering this matchup with an overall record of 30-16 and sitting in fourth in the Western Conference. Likewise, Golden State has been terrific as well, having won 33 of its 46 games and 3.5 games behind Phoenix for the top seed in the West.
It's possible that some key players for Utah don't suit up on Sunday night, which makes things a little more complicated for them. Will the Jazz be able to overcome those injuries, or are we more likely to see the Warriors take care of business?
Donovan Mitchell has already been ruled out due to a concussion, and Rudy Gobert, Bojan Bogdanovic, and Hassan Whiteside are all currently sitting on the injury report with him.
That's obviously not a great thing to see while fighting for position in the Western Conference, especially when you consider the Jazz have lost six of their last eight games.
Those eight games have been far from pretty for this Jazz team. Entering this matchup, the Jazz still have the number one Offensive Rating in the NBA according to NBA Advanced Stats. They are scoring 116.1 points per 100 possessions, but in their last eight games, that number has dropped to 112.0.
In that span, they've seen their 3-point shooting efficiency drop almost two percentage points down to 34.5%. That wouldn't be good news for any NBA team, but it is particularly concerning considering the Jazz attempt almost 41 3s per game as their 43.6% 3-point shot frequency leads the league (excluding garbage time, per Cleaning The Glass).
Defensively, the Jazz have struggled as well and seen their Defensive Rating soar to 116.2 in their last eight games. This is significantly higher than their rating of 108.7 for the entire season. They've also allowed their opponents to shoot 47.5% from the floor in their last eight, which has contributed to being in some tight matchups with inferior opponents.
Not much has gone right for the Jazz as of late, which started to become clear when they suffered losses the Pistons, Rockets, and Pacers earlier this month. They are need to clean some things up if they want to have a chance to defeat Golden State on the road.
Golden State Warriors
Outside of Draymond Green nursing a calf injury and Andre Iguodala taking time off to rest, the Golden State Warriors are as healthy as we have seen them this season.
That is great news because just like the Jazz, the Warriors have not been playing their best basketball as of late, winning just four of their last 10 games.
Offensively, Golden State has been quite stagnant, leading to many tight games down the stretch. In their last 10 games, this Warriors team is averaging just 104.2 points per game while shooting just 43% from the field overall and a dismal 30.1% from behind the arc, all of which are significant decreases from their season averages.
However, the Warriors are having tons of success on the defensive end of the floor, which has been a theme for them all season.
In their last 10 games, Golden State has an incredible Defensive Rating of 103.6, the second best in the NBA during that stretch. They've managed to hold their opponents to just 102 points per game too, as well as holding them to shoot 42% from the floor and 32% from behind the arc.
Even without Draymond Green, this team has found a way to keep their opponents in check on the defensive end of the floor. Contributions from Andrew Wiggins on the perimeter and Kevon Looney on the inside have proven to be the difference, and they will need to bring that same energy into this matchup.
Neither offense has been playing up to its potential since the calendar turned to 2022, which is a bit of a concern entering this matchup.
However, the defensive play of Golden State is a trend that we've seen all season and I don't expect that to change on Sunday. Mitchell being out of the lineup for the Jazz bodes well for the Warriors too, and the potential to be without Gobert could keep the Jazz offense in the slump they currently find themselves in.
Both squads have had some flaws as of late, and with the injury status of several key players up in the air, this is a good spot to take the under as this will likely be another closely contested game.
Pick: Total Under 219.5 (-110)