The Toronto Raptors had a golden opportunity to knock off the Golden State Warriors at home in Game 5 of these NBA Finals, leading by six with less than 3 ½ minutes in regulation, but they found out just how difficult it is to finish out a championship. Kevin Durant went down in the second quarter with a ruptured Achilles tendon, and the Raptors looked headed to a title, but then Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson drained three consecutive three-pointers, and the Warriors did just enough to escape with a 106-105 win.
In that game, Curry put up 31 points and Thompson chipped in 26. Kawhi Leonard had 26 points for the Raptors, but he went on a personal 10-0 run in the fourth quarter to stake the Raptors to that late lead. Kyle Lowry had 18 points but had a potential game-winning three-pointer blocked by Draymond Green, and Marc Gasol scored 17. Can Toronto win its third straight game at Oracle Arena in these Finals? Or will Golden State reach down deep and force a Game 7? Take a look at our NBA betting preview on what will be a classic matchup.
Raptors vs Warriors 2019 NBA Finals Game 6 Odds & Preview
Why should you bet on Toronto?
Toronto almost won the game despite the fact that Kawhi Leonard was shut down for the first three quarters of the game. He eventually broke through for those team-best 26 points and also pulled down a dozen boards and dealt out six assists. Serge Ibaka joined Leonard, Lowy and Gasol in double figures with 15 points in only 17 minutes coming off the bench. If Toronto had not gone cold in the last minute, missing four straight shots and coughing up the ball, the championship parade might already be set to take place.
Obviously, Toronto has no fear playing in Golden State, where they won Games 3 and 4 of these Finals, with Kevin Durant then on the bench as well for the Warriors. They have covered in seven of their last nine games overall and in three of their last five games of the Finals. If you like Toronto, you seem them regrouping — like they did in the third and early fourth quarters in Game 6, using a 40-20 run to turn a 14-point deficit into a six-point lead — and finishing the job on the road.
Why should you put your money on Golden State?
DeMarcus Cousins did a solid job replacing Kevin Durant in Game 5, putting up 14 points off the bench, and Draymond Green stepped up with 10 points, 10 boards, eight assists and that crucial block in the waning seconds. The Warriors shot 46 percent from the floor on the night and nailed 20 of their 42 shots from downtown. Even so, they gave up that 14-point lead and needed heroics from the Splash Brothers to escape with a win. Can the Warriors win without Kevin Durant?
The Warriors have only covered once in their last six games overall and once in their last five games at Oracle Arena. However, they have covered in 17 of their last 24 games against teams with road records better than .600. If you like Golden State here, you see them playing lights out again with their backs against the wall, against a Toronto team that has already beaten them twice on their home floor.
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
Toronto comes in with mental strength and a disciplined system, and I don’t see them getting caught in Golden State’s defensive net like they did in the first half of Game 5. I see Toronto taking control late and winning their first title, 112-109.