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Golden State Warriors vs Sacramento Kings NBA Playoff Odds, Picks & Predictions

Mark Strotman for Bookies.com

Mark Strotman  | 5 mins

Golden State Warriors vs Sacramento Kings NBA Playoff Odds, Picks & Predictions

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We’ll have our research team do some digging, but we can’t imagine a No. 3 seed has been such a large underdog in Round 1 of the NBA Playoffs quite like the Sacramento Kings are. 

After a 48-win season that broke the longest playoff drought in pro sports (16 seasons), the Kings’ reward was a first-round series against Steph Curry and the defending champion Warriors. So much for easing back into the postseason swing of things.

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Beyond the stellar cast of players in this series, the home and away splits will be the most interesting thing to watch. Here’s why: The Warriors finished 33-8 at home, the third-best mark in the NBA behind the Nuggets and Grizzlies. So why are they beginning the postseason on the road? 

Because they were 11-30 away from Chase Center—the fourth worst mark in the NBA­, ahead of only the Lottery-bound Spurs, Rockets, and Pistons. Those splits were a reverse for the Kings, who were 23-18 at home—tied for the worst mark among all playoff teams—but a terrific 25-16 on the road (only the Bucks’ 26-15 mark was better in the NBA).

So we’ve got the Warriors who were great at home hosting a great road team in the Kings. And then the Kings’ pedestrian home record hosting the Warriors’ horrific road record. It’s a classic “something’s gotta give,” with either the Kings holding serve at home or the Warriors taming the Kings in San Francisco. Let's take a look at our NBA picks.

Warriors vs. Kings Game 1 Odds

Warriors vs. Kings Betting Tips

Will oddsmakers set totals too high?

On the surface, this has all the makings of an offense vs. offense shootout of a series. The Kings ranked first in offensive rating, first in points, second in 3-point makes, and second in effective field goal percentage. 

The Warriors ranked 10th in offensive rating, second in points, first in 3-point makes, and third in effective field goal percentage. Get the picture? But three of the four matchups between these two teams went under—and the only over was on Oct. 23, three games into the season. Don’t fall in love with the overs here just because of the firepower on both sides. Oddsmakers on sports betting apps are taking that into account.

Expect a big series from Domantas Sabonis

Big-time players come up in big-time spots. It’s cliché, but it’s also true. Sabonis punished the Warriors in three games this season, averaging 21.3 points, 16.7 rebounds, and 6.0 assists. 

Even more telling: His usage rate of 26.8 vs. Golden State was the second highest of any opponent he faced this season (Denver, 27.4). Golden State’s weakness is defending centers, giving us even more reason to expect massive numbers from Sabonis. If you’re looking for player props, Sabonis’ points, rebounds, and assists are a great place to start. We like the NBA odds there.

He should average close to 40 minutes in this series. Averaging close to a triple-double isn’t out of the question.

Experience will play a factor

Not only are Steph and the Warriors the defending champs, they have the most experience of any team in this year’s postseason. 

They may no longer qualify as a dynasty like they did a few years back, but playoff experience trumps a lot in April, May, and June. In fact, four Warriors EACH have more individual postseason minutes than the Kings’ entire roster:

Sacramento will have to overcome the talent discrepancy—the Warriors won three of four matchups—and the fact that Golden State has made the playoffs its second home eight of the last 11 seasons. Sacramento won’t be shellshocked by the stage, but the Warriors have a clear advantage here for NBA betting purposes.

Warriors vs. Kings Best Bets

Our heart wants to take the Kings. They’ve been through so much as a franchise and were one of the best stories of the season. 

We love Lighting the Beam after every win, and it’s remarkable how they’ve turned the franchise around after passing on Luka Doncic, trading Tyrese Haliburton for Sabonis, and missing the playoffs for nearly two decades straight.

Our head is telling us the Warriors have an extra gear in the postseason. Their home-road splits are mind-boggling, but they’ll only need to win one in Sacramento while taking care of business at home like they always do (11-1 SU last year).

Steph, Klay, Dray, and the supporting cast may not make a Finals run, but they’ll take care of business against a Kings defense that can score with the best of them—but is also the worst defense in the postseason (and 24th overall). That’s not a good thing to be when going up against the Warriors offense.

We like the Warriors in 6, with the Kings winning two at home. 

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About the Author

Mark Strotman for Bookies.com
Mark Strotman
Mark is a veteran sports betting journalist who has covered the Bulls and the NBA since 2012. His work has appeared on ESPN.com, FoxSports.com, The Chicago Tribune and Yahoo Sports. He regularly provides NBA betting picks, as well as in-depth sportsbook reviews and the latest promo codes for all the major sports gambling operators, including Caesars Sportsbook, BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel and more.