Golden State (0-1) at New Orleans (0-1)
When: Friday, October 28th 2016
Where: Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, LA
Time: 9:35 ET | TV: ESPN
The Golden State Warriors will try and rebound from an embarrassing opening night loss at home when they take to the road to battle the New Orleans Pelicans on Friday. The Warriors blew a 3-1 series lead to lose last year’s NBA Finals and opened the season with a 29-point home loss to San Antonio on Tuesday. The Warriors are about to play their first road game of the season and hear how a hostile crowd responds to Kevin Durant, who drew plenty of criticism for joining a team that won an NBA-record 73 games last season. Durant put up 27 points and 10 rebounds in his team debut but Golden State was out-rebounded 64-41 and allowed 21 offensive boards after shipping center Andrew Bogut to Dallas to make room for Durant in the offseason. Steph Curry, who set an NBA record with 402 3-pointers last season, went 3-of-10 from beyond the arc in the opener. The Warriors finished third in the NBA with a defensive field goal percentage of 43.5% last season, but allowed San Antonio to make 48% of their shots on Tuesday. Golden State has won the last seven in the series with New Orleans, going back to a four-game sweep in the first round of the 2015 playoffs.
The best player on the court tonight may be the Pelicans’ Anthony Davis, who recorded 50 points, 16 rebounds, seven steals, five assists and four blocks but New Orleans still fell to the Denver Nuggets 107-102 at home on Wednesday. “It’s tough. It probably wasn’t enough,” Davis told reporters, knowing he needs to carry his team this season. Health has always been the biggest concern for Davis, who was shut down in March with a knee injury and battled a sprained ankle in training camp. Tim Frazier added five rebounds to go with 15 points and 11 assists but New Orleans was still out-rebounded 69-42 by Denver. Pelicans rookie G Buddy Hield, who was a star at Oklahoma, went 2-for-8 from the field, including 0-of-3 from 3-point range, in his NBA debut. The Pelicans will turn right around and play at San Antonio on Saturday night before playing again on Tuesday.
It might take some time for Durant to fit in with his new team, but this Golden State team is way better than they played on Tuesday. You can see how New Orleans’ season is going to go by looking at the boxscore from the other night. Davis will win some games by himself, but the Pelicans will have a long season. I like New Orleans to keep this one close tonight with the Warriors coming away with the win.
Pick: Pelicans +10