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Locky: A Case for Betting the Total in NBA Finals Game 3

Game 2 didn’t go so great in the second half for Cavs bettors. Cleveland rallied several times, looking as feisty as an underdog can look, but when the wheels came off — or rather, when Steph Curry tore them off — it really fell apart. Nevertheless, we move on.

I am a little surprised the Cavs are getting so much credit, given how badly they played in Game 2. The lookahead spreads for the games in Cleveland before the series started were Warriors -4.5, and I remember thinking, “I can see these staying the same, or going up, but never ever going down unless someone gets hurt.” Well, they stayed the same, but secretly deep down I expected we’d see 5.5 or 6 in this spot. The talent gap is just really that crazy.

 

If you like the Cavs here, you are focused on two very key components to the Warriors’ playoff run thus far. For starters, they’ve shown a propensity to mail in a road game in each of the first two series against overmatched opponents. And secondly, their overall road metrics in the playoffs haven’t been great. (Important note: They’re skewed a little by playing four games in Houston, which Cleveland is most certainly not.)

This all seems to line up nicely for a Cavs team that plays so much better at home. The stats would tell you things are definitely about to flip, but “flip” could just mean Cleveland is really competitive, to be honest. I don’t think the Warriors can be trusted here. Too many outcomes are possible for me to justify investing in the spread.

But I am betting the total. 

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Credit:

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: LeBron James and Stephen Curry

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