Golden State Warriors vs Phoenix Suns 12/25/21: Starting Lineups, Matchup Preview, Betting Odds, Live Stream
Golden State Warriors vs. Phoenix Suns Matchup Preview (12/25/21)
For the third time this season, the Golden State Warriors and Phoenix Suns will fight for the title of “Best Team in the NBA.” The series is currently tied 1-1, with both teams securing wins at home. Now, Phoenix will have a slight advantage in that it will be playing its second game at home. As if that was not enough to work with, the Warriors will also be missing several key players and a couple of starters, including Jordan Poole, Andrew Wiggins, Andre Iguodala, and Damion Lee. Additionally, Golden State will be without two other massive contributors in James Wiseman and Klay Thompson, who had target dates for a return around this time. Unfortunately, the Warriors are just a bit behind schedule with bringing them back, but that could all be a part of the plan. They have no reason to rush those two back unless they are perfectly healthy and ready to push Golden State to new heights. Meanwhile, Phoenix has not had to battle many of the things other teams have had to, including COVID, health and safety protocols, and significant injuries. Devin Booker was out for a while, but it was not too substantial. Regardless, it is inspiring to watch Phoenix come back and show so much fortitude after a devastating NBA Finals loss last season. This will be one of the few Christmas Day games that still has so much star power, and thus, very exciting.
Golden State Warriors vs. Phoenix Suns Betting Odds
It will hurt the Warriors if they will indeed be without Andrew Wiggins, Damion Lee, Andre Iguodala, and Jordan Poole. The Suns have virtually everyone healthy for this matchup since they got Devin Booker back from a hamstring injury a few days ago. The Suns handily beat the Warriors the last time they played at the Footprint Center, and I would expect a similar result, especially given that Steph Curry will have even less help than before. Curry played one of his worst games in recent memory in Phoenix, mainly due to the Suns’ stifling defense. Without Poole or Wiggins contributing as secondary scoring options, this should result in a double-digit victory for Phoenix. Check the spread when it comes out, but as long as it is not too wide, then I’ll take Phoenix ATS.
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Time: 5:00 PM ET
Arena: Footprint Center – Phoenix, AZ
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Golden State Warriors Starting Lineup
Golden State Warriors Analysis
Golden State will hopefully only have to take a couple more minor hits before it is fully healthy across the board. Wiseman and Thompson should be targeting early-January returns, while all of the Warriors mentioned above in the NBA’s health and safety protocols will also likely be back in action around that time. In the meantime, it could be a bit bumpy, especially against this full-strength Phoenix Suns squad that comfortably beat them last time they played at the Footprint Center. Golden State will need guys like Otto Porter Jr and Gary Payton II to step up in a significant way this game if it wants a chance at winning. Steph Curry should be getting doubled off every ball screen and having a defender in his hip pocket every possession, so the outcome of this game may ultimately depend on the role players.
Phoenix Suns Starting Lineup
Phoenix Suns Analysis
The Phoenix Suns have done a terrific job internally so far. They have not allowed any massive COVID outbreaks or anything that could jeopardize the direction of this team. While that is always subject to change, I feel it will not. Phoenix has rattled off four straight wins, including a couple of massive blowouts over the Los Angeles Lakers, Charlotte Hornets, and Washington Wizards. Phoenix could be the best team in the NBA; however, it is essential to remember the Warriors are still without two starters in Klay Thompson and James Wiseman. Luckily, the Suns have been developing their chemistry, so it should not make too much of a difference when they do return. Phoenix should control this game simply because the Warriors will be without a true secondary scorer. If Curry has to rely on Porter or Payton to hit a ton of shots, then I have a hard time believing the Warriors can realistically win.
Golden State Warriors vs. Phoenix Suns Daily Fantasy Picks
I think everyone is running out of things to say about Steph Curry at this point. Curry solidified his status as the greatest three-point shooter in NBA history when he broke the record in Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks. Now, that record has been broken, and nothing is holding the Warriors back from playing up to their full capabilities. When a player is so close to such an unbelievable accomplishment, it can sometimes disrupt the flow of an offense, especially one as organic and fluid as the Warriors. Since breaking the record, Curry has registered back-to-back 30 point games against the Boston Celtics and Sacramento Kings, respectively. Curry has been a bit cold from behind the arc recently, but I could see him breaking out of his slump in a massive game against the Phoenix Suns. Curry is poised for another run at the MVP award, and games like this will be massive in determining the eventual winner.
Devin Booker is back and ready to play on Christmas Day with most of his teammates. Phoenix lucked out and avoided any major COVID outbreak, so it currently has no players in the NBA’s health and safety protocols. Booker had 16 points, six rebounds, and five assists on 6-for-15 from the field in his first game back. While that performance was not necessarily inspiring, it was nice to see him back on the court for the first time since November. I would not expect Booker to have a massive performance in only his second game back against such an elite defense; however, his six rebounds and five assists last game were promising in terms of DFS. If Booker fills it up in several different statistical categories, then he may be worth a look on Christmas Day.