After an impressive stretch of play in the second half against the Clippers that resulted in a win, the Golden State Warriors now host the Pelicans in a back-to-back. They open as a small favorite amidst injury concerns, currently sitting at -4.5. The Pelicans are no stranger to injury news themselves, getting decimated throughout the season. With drastic identity changes, points may come at a premium. Especially on the Warriors end.
New Orleans Pelicans vs Golden State Warriors Betting Odds
On the back end of a back-to-back, oddsmakers have tempered their expectations of the Warriors chances to run away with this one as they opened Golden State as a -5.5 favorite. Bettors were quick to hit the Pelicans, taking them down to +4.5 as of writing. This still sits above the key number of +4, yet a little too tight for my liking. This isn’t the same NOLA squad they dominated early in the season, drastically getting hammered by the injury bug.
As for the total, points are expected to be scored at a moderate pace as oddsmakers opened the number at 227.5. Even in a game with potential tired legs for Golden State and an anemic offense for New Orleans, bettors have hit the over by taking it up to as high as 230.5 as of writing. This early movement comes as a bit of a surprise and gives me pause for a full game wager. Instead, I will be focusing on just a team total under.
New Orleans Pelicans vs Golden State Warriors Prediction
The Pick: Golden State Warriors Team Total Under 117.5
As I’ve eluded too so far, I will take Golden State’s team total under as I believe the offensive efficiency will struggle to replicate as we saw late in their previous game. The Clippers held the Warriors in check early on, looking all but locked up until a late burst in the second half. Now the Warriors come into this one on no rest as well as facing a more efficient defense per TeamRankings.
New Orleans currently ranks top-10 in Adjusted Defensive Efficiency, basing a brunt of their success on their ability to limit the three pointer. Per TeamRankings, New Orleans ranks first in defensive three point percentage by holding opposing offenses to 33.8% from deep. That doesn’t bode well for Golden State who is one of the more three point reliant units in basketball, trading shots between Jordan Poole and Klay Thompson.
By limiting the quality of looks from three and forcing the Warriors to lean heavier towards interior play, the expected scoring pace will take a massive dip. Jordan Poole is a capable playmaker in his own right, yet Klay plays more off the ball with a tendency to hover around the perimeter. Should Klay be drastically slowed down with smothered looks, the Warriors scoring output will be subject to scoring lulls with a lack of secondary scorers to make up for it.
- Under is 9-2 in the last 11 meetings against each other
- Pelicans are 1-4-1 ATS in the last six meetings in Golden State
Can New Orleans keep the Warriors out of the paint without Jonas Valanciunas?
New Orleans interior defense vs Warriors slashing offense
One area of concern for the under is the Warriors ability to get more open looks at the rim should Jonas Valanciunas not suit up. He is currently listed as Doubtful, expected to miss this contest.
The under ticket is potentially saved from the Pelicans trading his immense size with more length to cover the gaps. Brandon Ingram has returned from injury, as well as the ever-improving Herbert Jones.
With length around the perimeter, this slows the Warriors cutting ability and allows backup center Jaxson Hayes to make the right shifts and help contest looks at the rim.
Take the Warriors team total under as their offense will struggle against the elite New Orleans perimeter defense. The lack of secondary scorers will be unable to fill the gap for a potential Klay Thompson clunker.
New Orleans Pelicans Starting Lineup
Golden State Warriors Starting Lineups
New Orleans Pelicans Injuries: Jonas Valanciunas (D), Jose Alvarado (O), Larry Nance Jr (O), Zion Williamson (O), EJ Liddell (O)
Golden State Warriors Injuries: Stephen Curry (O), Andrew Wiggins (O), Gary Payton II (O), Andre Iguodala (O)