Warriors vs. Celtics: NBA Finals Game 6 Player Props
Let’s take a moment and consider if one had a free bet to make before Game 5 of the NBA Finals, but this time, courtesy of the prop Gods. We were given the bonus of knowing the following: Stephen Curry would not hit a three for the first time in 233 games, he’d be held under 20 points, and the Warriors in total would launch 40 threes and hit just nine (22.2%). In addition, Boston would outscore Golden State 35-24 in the third quarter ending the Warriors’ dominance coming out of the break, Jayson Tatum would lead all scorers with 27 points, and the Celtics starters would outscore the Dubs’ first five by double digits.
Knowing this, it would be safe to assume that our gift-free bet would not go anywhere near the Warriors winning this game, much less cover or win any race to a point level short of the first basket of the game – and even that might require some thought.
But as we are all too aware, the Warriors won Game 5, dominating the final quarter to post a 104-94 victory and head to Boston one win away from capturing their fourth title in the last eight seasons.
So, what happened in Game 5 that the Celtics are now on the brink? For starters, the Celtics committed 18 turnovers leading to 22 Warrior points. Golden State committed just six floor errors. Boston also shot a miserable 21 of 31 (67.7%) from the free-throw line – costly, to be sure, and made worse by the fact that the Celtics had 16 more attempts from the charity stripe than Golden State, who shot 86.6% (13 of 15).
Golden State also dominated in the paint, outscoring Boston 50-36. For all the criticism the Warriors faced after Boston dominated the interior in Game 3, the Dubs have won this battle in three of the five games, outscoring Boston 88-68 in the last two.
Last and certainly not least was the performance of Golden State swingman Andrew Wiggins. With Curry having a rare off night shooting, the former number one pick out of Kansas had the biggest game of his career when his team needed it most, exploding for 26 points and 13 rebounds. While Curry’s performance for the ages was the headline story of Game 4, Wiggins also rose to the occasion, hauling in a career-high 16 rebounds to go with 17 points while keeping Tatum in check. The Toronto, Ontario native’s emergence in the postseason, and particularly in the Finals, is undoubtedly one of the key factors behind the Warriors being where they are now – on the verge of adding another title chapter to Golden State’s storied franchise.
So, on the heels of a somewhat confounding Game 5, we turn to Game 6 player props as the Celtics look to hold serve at home and force a deciding Game 7.
Jayson Tatum Over 27.5 points (-120)
The Celtics tough Game 5 loss overshadowed an outstanding performance from Jayson Tatum. The Celtics forward scored 27 points on ten of 20 shooting, including five of nine from distance. Expect the C’s star to see the ball early and often in this must-have contest. The “your best players have to be your best players” cliché is in play here, and expect Tatum to rise to the challenge.
Stephen Curry Under 28.5 points (-110)
There are specific scenarios that support taking the under that don’t rely on Stephen Curry having another miserable shooting night. The Celtics could be comfortably ahead in the fourth quarter, and Curry is forced to fight again in the finale, all the more likely given that he continues to play through an ankle injury. The star guard embarrassed this recommendation in Game 4. Still, the over appears even more challenging to beat this time with the Celtics fighting for their lives at home and a more human performance expected from Curry.
Andrew Wiggins Over 7.5 rebounds (-149)
Andrew Wiggins has obliterated his rebound prop in the past two games, so this looks too good to pass up. He is playing a ton of minutes and riding the momentum of back-to-back standout performances. Matched up against Tatum, staying out of foul trouble will be critical, but that aside, Wiggins appears poised to surpass this prop once again.
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