The Warriors return home as a 6 point favorite against the Sacramento Kings after falling down 0-2 in the series, dropping both road games in Sacramento. That said, The Kings are in a good position to apply the pressure on the Warriors with another win as Golden State will be without their vocal leader in Draymond Green after he received a suspension from the league for stomping on Domantas Sabonis’s chest in a skirmish at the end of Game 2. With Sabonis appearing probable to play, and the Warriors having no answers for the Kings slashing ability, my prediction is that the Kings keep it close by covering the spread.
Sacramento Kings vs Golden State Warriors Prediction
The Pick: Kings +6
I initially put a piece on the open of +7.5 and would take this down to no lower than +6 as the Kings should have little to no issue in continuing their game plan. Especially without Draymond Green anchoring the interior, opening the paint for Sabonis to deal damage as one of the more efficient interior scorers in the league. The Warriors defensive issues won’t be fixed overnight, but it should be noted that they do perform better at home which brings some value to the under as well.
The Warriors finished the year below average in Defensive Efficiency, ranking 17th per TeamRankings, yet climbed up to fourth when defending their home court. This was a common theme throughout the season, dominating at home while falling flat on their face when they hit the road. This drastic home and away split has been unexplainable and downright confusing as the Warriors continuity has been a dynasty.
Even with the improvement on the defensive end, I am hard pressed to see how the Warriors slow down the Kings as they have routinely slashed through their gaps with ease. De’Aaron Fox has been unstoppable by commanding defensive attention when he drives towards the rim, either finishing for a high-quality look or kicking it out to an open shooter. Green’s absence hurts as Sabonis will see an uptick in open looks when he stretches out for a mid-range look as a knock down shooter while also opening the lane for Fox.
Sacramento Kings vs Golden State Warriors Betting Odds
Interestingly enough, oddsmakers tempered their expectations of the Kings getting it done for a third game in a row as they opened Sacramento as a +7.5 underdog. That was before the Draymond suspension news, now currently sitting as a +6 underdog as of writing. That number has dipped to +5.5 as the Warriors injury report racks up names but has regressed back to +6 with indicators of them fielding mostly everyone.
As for the total, points are expected to be scored at a blistering pace as oddsmakers opened the number at 238.5. Bettors were quick to back the over, taking the number up to as high as 240.5. That comes as no surprise as the Warriors defense has had no answers for the Kings offense and are now without their best defender in the interior. Without Green’s facilitation on offense, we may see more pick and rolls with Curry to create space instead of cuts towards the gaps.
- Kings are 20-8 ATS in the last 28 meetings against each other
- Under is 3-1-1 in the last five meetings overall
- Kings are 11-2 ATS in the last 13 meetings in Golden State
Can the Kings limit Steph Curry?
Steph Curry Vs. Kings perimeter defense
The Kings have not exactly been the best perimeter defense throughout the year, ranking 25th in the league by allowing opposing offenses to shoot 37.1% from deep. They drastically improved in that area since the start of the playoffs, playing with an added emphasis in defending the arc against the Warriors three point shooters by holding them to a lowly 30.5%.
Without Green’s facilitation across the middle, the Warriors may opt into more looks from Curry by creating space with picks up top. Fox will need to be alert and slip over the top while Sabonis may creep up to cut off the interior. This forces Curry to rely on Looney and Kuminga to make the play down low, a feat I’m not so sure they can consistently do.
Back the Kings at no lower than +6 as they look to apply the pressure on the Warriors by taking a commanding series 3-0 lead.
Sacramento Kings Starting Lineup
Golden State Warriors Starting Lineups
Sacramento Kings Injuries: Domantas Sabonis (Q), Matthew Dellavedova (O), KZ Okpala (O)
Golden State Warriors Injuries: Jordan Poole (Q), Gary Payton II (Q), Andrew Wiggins (Q), Draymond Green (O), Andre Iguodala (O), Ryan Rollins (O)