If it’s Christmas Day, the Under must be the right NBA pick for Saturday’s tilt between the Golden State Warriors and Phoenix Suns.
Golden State Warriors vs. Phoenix Suns
Saturday, December 25, 2021- 5:00 PM EST at Footprint Center
The Under was always going to be the right NBA pick for Christmas Day. The league and the players may take these games seriously from a financial perspective, but the level of play just isn’t quite the same; the Under is 35-20-1 dating back to 2005, and 26-9 when the game is starting before 5:30 PM EsT.
A little holiday present for all the sharps out there. Now that the omicron variant is sweeping across the league, we might have to double down. Things started getting really hairy on Monday when the Under went 5-1.
Tuesday was a 3-2 day, then 4-1 on Wednesday, before the Over rebounded and went 6-3-1 on Thursday. So how about Saturday’s game between the Golden State Warriors and Phoenix Suns? There’s a big 228.5-point total on the NBA odds board at MaximBet as we go to press, with Phoenix laying 3.5 points – a line that could change several times by the time you read this. Maybe the Under still has some legs despite Thursday’s results.
Feet of Klay
The Under might have been the right pick even if it weren’t Christmas. The Warriors (26-6 SU, 20-12-2 ATS) already have the Under at 21-10-1 this year, thanks mainly to their improved focus on defense, where they lead the league at just 99.1 points allowed per 100 possessions.
The Suns (25-6 SU, 17-14 ATS) are second in that category at 100.8 points allowed, and they’ve driven the Under to a 17-13-1 record thus far. Then you have to factor in all the missing personnel. Klay Thompson (Achilles) was hoping to make his return for Golden State on Christmas Day, but he’s aiming at January now.
Of the three Warriors on the COVID-19 list at press time, Andrew Wiggins isn’t expected to clear quarantine until December 29 and Damion Lee is supposedly out until New Year’s Day. Jordan Poole could be cleared at any moment; Andre Iguodala (knee) is also considered day-to-day for the Dubs.
A Thousand Suns
Miraculously, the Suns don’t have anyone in protocol at press time, although that could certainly change. Dario Saric, Frank Kaminsky, and Abdel Nader are all out indefinitely with knee injuries, but that still leaves Phoenix with a much deeper roster than the Warriors at this point.
Not that we’re likely to see too many replacement players suit up for Golden State on Christmas Day. They went 10 deep Thursday night with regulars and semi-regulars, putting Otto Porter Jr. and Gary Payton II in the starting lineup. But their lack of depth is still evident at this point.
One other note: The league has warned teams there might be some time-shifting with Saturday’s games if any of the five ends up being postponed, so there’s a chance this won’t be an “early” Christmas game after all. But I’ll recommend the Under anyway – and wish you and yours the best of the holiday season.
NBA Pick: Under 218(–110) with MaximBet