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Golden State Warriors’ Kevin Durant, left, is out for the rest of the series against the Houston Rockets. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
Golden State Warriors’ Kevin Durant, left, is out for the rest of the series against the Houston Rockets. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)|Associated Press
NBA

NBA Playoffs: Durant who? Game 6 drama gives Frank reason to share 2 picks for the Warriors vs Rockets

We warned you not to fall for the trap with the Warriors catching 3.5 in Game 3

Greg Frank

Greg Frank

Warriors (+7.5) @ ROCKETS (214)
Pick: Rockets -7.5
Pick: Under 214

Your eyes probably opened wide when seeing this line. Upon first glance, seven points and the hook probably seems like a lot even sans Kevin Durant. As we mentioned before Game 5, no game in this series has been decided by more than six points. However, normally any time your initial reaction is so strong at first glance, there’s value on the other side. Sportsbooks don’t give out free money. Favorites of seven points or more have been a good bet most of the NBA playoffs and another big favorite cashed on Wednesday as Milwaukee closed out Boston in convincing fashion. Houston is 5-0 and 4-1 ATS at home in the postseason. We warned you not to fall for the trap with the Warriors catching 3.5 in Game 3 with Durant playing and this is the same concept just with more points with Durant out. Golden State has the ultimate safety net of Game 7 at home and if Houston can get out early, the backdoor probably won’t be open late. The Action Network’s John Ewing tweeted out some interesting trends about Golden State today which make us feel better about the Rockets side. Under Steve Kerr, the Warriors are 1-6 and 2-5 ATS as underdogs of at least five points. It’s no surprise that the public is on the Warriors with this many points as 57% of the tickets are on Golden State as of this writing. Ewing pointed out that when Golden State is a playoff underdog getting more than half the action, the Warriors are 1-5 ATS. I also like the under here. Totals have been hovering around 220 in this series and I’m not sure six points is enough of an adjustment without Durant. Games 1 and 5 saw a combined 205 and 203 points respectively and Golden State’s going to have to try and win a lower-scoring game anyway. But the mere fact that two games in this series with a scorer like Durant landed comfortably under 214 makes me think there’s value in his absence.