The third-seeded Houston Rockets surprised many with a 126-99 rout of the second-seeded San Antonio Spurs as six-point road underdogs in Game 1 of their Western Conference semifinal playoff series on Monday. Now the question is, will the Spurs bounce back in Game 2 and cover the spread as five-point home chalk on Wednesday?
Odds courtesy of OddsShark.com
San Antonio had won the last three meetings heading into the series opener along with six of the previous seven, going 5-2 against the spread during that stretch. But six Rockets scored in double figures in Game 1, as they built a massive 69-39 halftime lead and cruised from there.
Houston’s Patrick Beverley scored just seven points to go along with seven rebounds and four assists, although the team was plus-37 with him on the court. The Rockets were also plus-37 with Ryan Anderson, who scored 14 points.
Kawhi Leonard was one of three Spurs to score in double figures with a team-high 21 points. However, Leonard made only 5-of-14 shots from the field, and San Antonio made 36.9 percent of its attempts overall, going 9-of-29 from behind the three-point arc.
Age could be an issue for the veteran-laden Spurs, as they have dropped three of their last five games in the postseason straight up and ATS with the over cashing each time.
In the Eastern Conference, the second-seeded Cleveland Cavaliers had no problem defeating the third-seeded Toronto Raptors 116-105 to cover Game 1 of their series as seven-point home favorites on Monday. The Cavaliers have now beaten the Raptors by double digits in each of the past four home meetings in the playoffs, going 4-0 ATS and winning by an average of nearly 25 points. Cleveland is a 7.5-point favorite in Game 2.
Toronto got very little from most of the team’s players outside of guards DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry, as the starting backcourt combined to score 39 points, dish out 13 assists and grab nine rebounds. The Raptors could not slow down the Cavs offensively, surrendering 62 points in the first half despite the fact that their opponent had not played in over a week.
LeBron James was anything but rusty for the defending NBA champions, scoring a game-high 35 points and adding 10 rebounds.