Warriors vs. Jazz Odds & Picks: Back Utah To Cover Number Against Golden State
Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell.
- Sizzling Utah welcomes Golden State to Salt Lake City for Saturday's NBA game.
- Can the Jazz make it eight consecutve victories?
- Phillip Kall thinks so and explains why below.
Warriors vs. Jazz Odds
|Warriors Odds||+6.5 [BET NOW]|
|Jazz Odds||-6.5 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||+220/-275 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||225.5 [BET NOW]|
|Time||9:05 p.m. ET|
|Odds as of Friday at 8:45 p.m. ET and via BetMGM. Get an INSTANT $500 deposit match at BetMGM today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.|
The Utah Jazz put their seven-game winning streak on the line Saturday when they host the Golden State Warriors.
And while seven consecutive victories in a row is an impressive feat, only one of them came against a team holding better than a .500 winning percentage. The Warriors (8-7) might be a game above the .500 mark, but they will still be the second-best team they have played since starting their recent tear.
Without wingman Klay Thompson, Steph Curry has done whatever he can to keep Golden State afloat. With seven of eight wins coming when Curry has scoered 26 or more points, saying they need him to play well is an understatement.
Developing role players and Thompson being absent might keep this team from being a contender, but Curry has shown he will keep them interesting.
Behind its smothering defense, Utah will make things extra tricky for Curry, though. However, with unlimited range, all he needs is a hot hand to make any defense look like weak.
That said, let’s dig deeper to see if Curry can carry once again or if Utah will be too much in this contest.
Golden State Warriors
Losing to the New York Knicks on Thursday showed the Warriors’ troubles in supporting Curry. The 119-104 defeat occurred despite him being able to put up 30 points on 9-of-19 shooting. Things might have gone differently had forward Draymond Green not been ejected in the second quarter.
If Golden State hopes to prevent a repeat of Thursday, its rebounding needs to improve. Being out-rebounded, 55-46, against the Knicks was just the latest instance of being beat on the glass, as it allows 47.4 rebounds per 100 possessions. That’s the fourth-most rebounds yielded in the entire league.
Facing the Jazz, who are ranked first with 49.6 rebounds per 100 possessions, hitting the glass will be even more important.
Offensively, Kelly Oubre needs to improve. With Phoenix last season, Oubre showcased the capability of playing as a secondary scorer by putting up 18.7 points per game, highlighted by 35.2% shooting from three-point land.
This year, the yips have caught him, as those numbers have fallen to 11.9 points per game on 20.7% from deep. If Oubre finds a way to shoot like he did last year, the court should open up for the rest of the offense.
On Thursday, the Jazz were tested by the New Orleans Pelicans after allowing 43 points in the first quarter. Utah also trailed by 12 points entering the second quarter. The Jazz showed their resilience, though, as they immediately fought back and entered halftime up a point.
As its has all season, Utah relied on its three-point shooting to lead it to victory after going 17 of 39 from behind the arc.
While most teams look to rely on the three-point shot, the Jazz have assembled the perfect roster to do so. Six of their eight leaders in minutes shoot better than league-average from three-point range.
Rudy Gobert and Derrick Favors are the only players below that mark and they have yet to attempt a three. With their deep and diverse shooting attack, the Jazz sit at an impressive 113.7 Offensive Rating per basketball-reference.
Defensively, Utah attacks the three-point line by forcing teams to take the ball toward Rudy Gobert. Playing into its hands, opponents attempt 61.2 two-point attempts per 100 possessions — the most by a wide margin per basketball-reference.
Having Gobert waiting in the paint makes these shots much more difficult, as opponents shoot only 48.9% on two-point attempts. Being able to attack the three-point line and still prevent teams from scoring inside make this Utah defense exceptionally unique.
The play of Curry makes the Warriors a team that can erupt on any given night. However, the struggles Golden State has when he goes cold also make it susceptible to a blowout.
Oubre and Andrew Wiggins have the talent to pick up the slack, but have yet to do so. If the past 15 games are any indication of what Saturday holds, overcoming the Jazz lies on Curry’s shoulders.
For the Jazz, extending their win streak should be a matter of failed execution, as their style counters the Warriors. Defensively, this means forcing the Warriors off the three-point line and into two-point range. Offensively, this means slowing the tempo and utilizing their shooters.
Having the size and rebounding advantage, Utah should force Golden State off its third-fastest pace of 104.1. With things slowed down, the size advantage and elite defense against the long-range shot the Jazz possess will make life much harder for the Warriors.
With signs pointing in favor of Utah, things may get ugly for Golden State. In their seven losses, the Warriors’ average loss margin is 18.7 points.
Back to Utah to cover the spread and make it eight consecutive wins.
Pick: Jazz -6.5 (play up to -8.5)