Game 1 of the NBA Finals showcased a lot of elite basketball, particularly in regards to defense and three-point shooting. Steph Curry (seven three-pointers) and the Golden State Warriors were torching the Boston Celtics from beyond the arc through the first 36 minutes of play, but in the game’s final quarter, it was the Celtics who caught fire with nine three-pointers and clamped down on the Warriors to steal Game 1 on the road.
Game 2 should be just as electrifying, so we’ve prepared bettors with a few player props and a lucrative same-game parlay that could make your viewing experience even more worthwhile. You can grab these kinds of props at all major sportsbooks, but it’s important to scan the betting industry for the best odds.
Boston Celtics vs. Golden State Warriors Game 2 Odds
Despite Golden State collapsing in Game 1, backing the team’s moneyline comes at a slightly higher price for Game 2 (between -178 and -185). Those favoring the Celts can grab them for as long as +155 on DraftKings and Caesars. The spread sits between 4 and 4.5 points across all sportsbooks.
Jayson Tatum ‘Over’ 26.5 Points (-114, FanDuel)
Jayson Tatum must be giving himself a long, hard look in the mirror after having a poor night shooting the basketball, because he has followed up every low-scoring outing with a hellaciously dominant scoring night.
Prior to last Thursday’s Game 1, the Boston forward’s four worst scoring nights in these playoffs have been (in order) 19, 21, 10, and 10 points. His very next game after those four have been 39, 29, 30, and 31, respectively.
He has even turned around from a 22-point game with a 30-point game, and from a 23-point game with a 29-point game. Simply put, Tatum is a bounce back-type of player, and after putting up just 12 points in Game 1, “over” backers should be very confident that he will exceed his 26.5-point over/under total. Depending how bullish you are, you can also take the “over” for 28.5 points at +136 and for 29.5 at +172.
Al Horford ‘Under’ 11.5 Points (-110, DraftKings), ‘Under’ 8.5 Points (+235, FanDuel)
It seems that Horford and Tatum share a similar seesaw-esque scoring trait, except that Horford follows his good games with bad ones instead.
He has racked up point totals of 16, 30, 20, and 16 in these playoffs, but he followed up those impressive numbers with no-show performances of three, eight, five, and three points, respectively.
Regression after a good night on the job is expected, but his is scary and not in a good way. No one really expects Horford at 35 years old to put on back-to-back high-scoring nights, especially since he’s not the C’s go-to bucket getter. Still, his drop-offs are not only drastic, but also habitual.
Jordan Poole ‘Over’ 13.5 Points (-116, BetMGM)
Poole shied away from shooting in Game 1, attempting just seven shots (made two) and scoring nine points all game, and the result was a loss. I see Game 1 as an outlier of a performance, as he had averaged 12 shots and 18.4 points per game heading into last Thursday’s contest. That type of shooting volume helped him reach 14-plus points in 11 of his 17 playoff games.
Down 1-0 in the series, Poole – like the rest of his team – understands the severity of Game 2, and he has shown throughout both the regular season and postseason that he’s comfortable and capable enough to come up big for his team. Fortunately for him, it’ll be in front of his home crowd in the Bay Area, which should ease some of his shooting nerves.
Warriors -4.5; Klay Thompson ‘Under’ 19.5 Points; Marcus Smart 2+ Steals (+800, DraftKings)
The Warriors controlled the pace for much of the game, opening up each half with huge leads and being up by as much as 15 points with two minutes left in the third quarter. Then the most lopsided fourth quarter in NBA Finals history happened. I expect a similar result for the first three quarters, but this time, the fourth quarter will be different, with the Dubs closing the game with dagger shots and free throws to even up the series.
Klay Thompson’s recent form hasn’t been so kind to “over” backers. He has delivered 20-plus points in just one game in his last six, and that came in a Game 6, where he’s widely known as “Game 6 Klay.” Marcus Smart was awarded the NBA Defensive Player of the Year honor for great reason, starting with his quick ball-snatching hands and defensive awareness. He has recorded two-plus steals in seven of 16 playoff games.