The Golden State Warriors may have lost in last year's NBA Finals to the Cleveland Cavaliers, but they remain the clear-cut favorites to win the 2017 NBA title going into Monday's regular season rematch with the Cavaliers, according to NBA betting at William Hill.
The Warriors have 8/11 odds to win the title, to the Cavaliers' 3/1 odds.
The Warriors and Cavaliers play Monday at 5 pm local time in a rematch of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena in Oakland, Calif. The game is also part of a full slate of games that will honor Martin Luther King Jr. on MLK Day.
Golden State is currently 34-6 and in first place in the Western Conference.
Yet Cleveland comes into the game still riding high off their first championship in 52 years, not to mention their thrilling comeback win on Christmas Day against the Warriors when they overcame a 14-point deficit to pull off a 109-108 victory at Quicken Loans Arena.
While Golden State hasn’t lost back to back games against a team in the regular season in 126 tries, the Warriors have lost four consecutive to Cleveland dating to June.
In that span, Warriors star Stephen Curry has struggled and averaged 4.1 turnovers versus just 3.6 assists.
But tonight, the Warriors are 7.5 point favorites at home, and an over/under of 224.5.
The Warriors have been smoking hot at home this season, going 18-3 behind newcomer Kevin Durant. The MVP candidate is now averaging 26 points, 8.6 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game with his new team.
The Cavaliers are 29-10 on the season but only 11-7 on the road.
Cleveland is led by Lebron James, who is averaging 25.8 points, 7.8 rebounds and a whopping 8.3 assists per game as he has played more of a facilitator role in 2017.
The Warriors are riding a three-game winning streak, blowing out Detroit 127-107 on Jan. 12. The Cavaliers, however, snapped a two-game losing streak with a 120-108 win at Sacramento during what has been an up and down road swing.
That said, Cleveland is pulling away from the rest of the teams in the Eastern Conference Central Standings, up 9 games over both Milwaukee and Indiana. Despite a rash of offseason moves to compete with James and the Cavaliers this season, the Chicago Bulls enter the week trailing by 9.5 games and are an even 21-21 on the season.
The Warriors currently have a 7-game lead on the Los Angeles Clippers, while Sacramento is well back, trailing by 18 games in third place in the Western Conference Pacific Standings.