The Toronto Raptors won both games in Oakland to take a commanding 3-1 series lead over the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals. We now head back to Canada to see if the Raptors can close out the series and win the first NBA Championship in their club’s history. As always, we preview the pivotal clash below and provide our best betting tips. Good luck to everyone following!
Golden State Warriors
It’s been a really difficult finals series for the back-to-back champs who now have their backs well and truly against the wall. They’re down 3-1 in the series and have lost five of their six meetings against the Raptors this season.
Obviously, the main talking point surrounding the Warriors this post-season has been the injuries to key players, namely Kevin Durant. While they could get away without their star forward in the first three rounds, the Raptors have proven to be too difficult to beat without him. There is some genuine noise around him returning for Game 5, which could be the turning point in the series.
If you’re looking for value in the Warriors markets here, we see Draymond Green’s rebound overs the best play. It’s dropped down to 9.5 for this game, which he’s managed to cover in 11 of his last 13 playoff games. Further, he will play extended minutes in this do-or-die clash, which will give him plenty of opportunity to snag a couple of extra boards than usual.
The Raptors have enjoyed a dream start to their first ever trip to the NBA Finals. They’ve been able to take advantage of an undermanned Warriors outfit to get to point where they are now just one win away from making history!
It hasn’t been quite the one-man show that it was in the Eastern Conference Finals, but Kawhi Leonard just continues to dominate in his first year in Toronto. He started the finals off with a quiet 23 points in Game 1, but has since posted 34, 30, and 36 in his last three games to lead the Raptors to a 3-1 series advantage over the Warriors.
There will be quite a few nervous Raptors players playing in a potential close out game in Game 5, but Kawhi Leonard will not be one of them. He’s already been an NBA Champion and Finals MVP before and we expect him to finish off the Warriors with a huge Game 5 performance.
Game 5 Prediction
We mentioned above that Kevin Durant is a chance to return for the Warriors in Game 5. However, if he does, he’ll likely be playing well below 100% fitness and will struggle to produce his best against a solid defensive team like the Raptors. He’s been listed as ‘questionable’ at this point in time, so make sure you’re checking out the team announcements closer to the tip-off.
The Raptors have already beaten the Warriors five times from six attempts this season and have all the momentum on their side as they go back to Toronto for Game 5. It’s going to be an incredible atmosphere at Scotiabank Arena on Tuesday morning with their fans hoping to celebrate a championship for the first time in their history.
The Warriors famously blew a 3-1 lead in the finals against the Cavaliers a few years back and will be hoping to be on the other end of a collapse this time around. However, we believe they’ve simply got too many injuries and the Raptors are playing too well at the moment, which is why we’ll be backing the Raptors in to close out the series on Tuesday.
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