The Golden State Warriors went into the All-Star break as –170 favorites to regain the NBA championship. They’ll start the unofficial second half of the regular season this Thursday when they host the Los Angeles Clippers, tipping off at 10:30 PM ET.
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This year’s Warriors team (47-9 SU, 27-27-2 ATS) is performing at an even higher level than last year’s 73-game winners. Adding Kevin Durant (+8.1 BPM) alongside Stephen Curry (+6.5 BPM) has taken away from each former MVP’s raw stats, but it’s made the Dubs tougher overall. Zaza Pachulia (+3.2 BPM) has also proved to be a capable – and generally healthier – replacement for departed center Andrew Bogut.
Health hasn’t been very kind to the Clippers (35-21 SU, 29-27 ATS). Their best player, Chris Paul (+9.8 BPM), is targeting a March 1 return after having surgery on his torn left thumb. Los Angeles is 6-7 SU and 7-6 ATS since Paul went on the shelf, although they did win their last four games straight up and against the spread after moving Ray Felton (–0.4 BPM) to the bench and putting Luc Mbah a Moute (+0.6 BPM) back in the starting lineup.
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