All odds are provided by Caesars Sportsbook.
What you need to know for Game 6 of the NBA Finals
Steph Struggles: Stephen Curry didn’t make a 3 pointer for the first time in his postseason career in Monday’s Game 5 win. That is unlikely to happen again and we could even see this superhuman Steph in Game 6. The last time he failed to make three 3’s in a game was Game 6 of the Western conference finals. He responded in his next game with six 3’s in the first quarter of the NBA Finals earlier this month.
X-Factor: Marcus Smart not only leads the Celtics in scoring in the second half during this series but has impacted the team in other ways that should help them in this win-or-go-home Game 6. He has a 3.8 assist-to-turnover ratio in wins, more than double his rate in losses (1.3) over the past month. Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown garner now of the attention, but it’s unlikely that the Finals go back to San Francisco without Smart giving the Celtics a strong effort.
– Kyle Soppe
Breaking down Game 6
Golden State Warriors at the Boston Celtics
9 pm ET, TD Garden, Boston
Line: Celtics (-4)
Money line: Celtics (-170), Warriors (+145)
Total: 210 points
BPI Projected Total: 222.4 points
BPI Win%: Celtics (68.8%)
Notable: Unders are 8-5 in Boston’s past 13 outright wins.
Best bet: Andrew Wiggins under 18.5 points: Andrew Wiggins was amazing in Game 5, but none of those stats will help cash tickets in Game 6. Wiggins scored 26 points and led the Warriors shots (23) because Stephen Curry had an off night. It’s tough to predict that same usage in Game 6 as Wiggins’ scoring upside is more limited than you might assume. He has played 192 minutes in this series and attempted just 13 free throws while missing 21-of-28 3-point attempts. He cashed over tickets in Game 5 by shooting 12-of-17 from inside the 3-point line, something that isn’t likely to happen again with increased focus from arguably the best defense in the NBA. – Soppe
Best bet: Marcus Smart over 5.5 assists. Smart is has 22 assists and just three turnovers in three elimination games this postseason. His usage rate is as high as it’s been all season and being at home is never a bad thing for assist counts. Smart averaged fewer shots and more assists at home than on the road during the regular season. – Soppe
Best bet: Over 210 points. This is the lowest total of the series, which I believe is a price that presents value on the over based on what happened in Game 5. The Celtics and Warriors combined to shoot a disastrous 20-of-72 (27%) from 3- point range on Monday. Golden State’s 22% and Boston’s 34% effort were each the worst long-range shooting performances for either team in this series. The Celtics missed 10 free throws and took only 75 total shots, their fourth-fewest output in 23 postseason games. Despite everything I just mentioned, we still saw 198 total points scored. I believe a better shooting performance is on the horizon, thus I like the idea of a half unit wager on the over. – Joe Fortenbaugh
Best bet: Stephen Curry over 28.5 points. Curry should bounce back in a big way in Game 6. He finished the Game 5 0-9 from 3-point range. In each game Curry has failed to hit a triple sinc 2013, he averaged 4.4 3s and a 46% 3-point percentage in the following game. This includes his 13 3s against the New Orleans Pelicans in 2016. – Eric Moody
Best bet: Jayson Tatum over 3.5 turnovers. Tatum has carried the load offensively for the Celtics this postseason, but he also averaged 4.1 turnovers per game. Tatum has committed 95 turnovers in the playoffs, surpassing LeBron James’ 2018 mark. – Moody
Best bet: Klay Thompson over 20.5 points, 3.5 3-pointers. Thompson has been inconsistent in this series, but when he’s locked in, he’s unstoppable. Thompson has delivered some Game 6 performances over the course of his career and another one is coming. He has averaged 20.7 PPG in 12 career Game 6’s, shooting 44.6% from the field and 49.5% from beyond the arc. Expect the Warriors to come out aggressively, and Thompson to show off his signature smirk a lot. – Moody
Best bet: Jayson Tatum over 41.5 points + assists + rebounds. The Celtics lost two consecutive games for the first time this postseason, one pattern that hasn’t been broken is Tatum’s big games after a loss. He went over 40.5 PAR in Game 5 and I expect him to produce even more in Game 6 the Celtics’ season on the line. – Snellings
Best bet: Marcus Smart over 15.5 points. I’ve been hammering this over for a while and will continue to do so. Smart dropped 20 points in Game 5 and has scored at least 18 points in five of his last six games. He has averaged 16.4 PPG in his last 14 outings. – Snellings
Best bet: Andrew Wiggins over 7.5 rebounds. Wiggins has become the primary rebounder for the Warriors in this series, with 29 boards over the last two games. Golden State has found success playing small ball, with either Draymond Green or Kevon Looney at the five and Wiggins crashing the glass at the four. Wiggins is peaking in his role and displaying the incredible athleticism that made him the No. 1 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. I expect another strong effort on the boards in Game 6. – Snellings