Cleveland Cavaliers at New Orleans Pelicans Betting Preview
Cleveland is going to be getting some reinforcements, as Larry Nance Jr. is going to be back in the lineup. The team greatly missed his defensive ability, plus floor spacing. Nance was leading the league in both steals and deflections at the time of his injury, so the team is getting a lot of value as he returns to the lineup. Darius Garland’s status is still unclear, but Larry’s return is huge.
New Orleans managed just 101 points on Thursday against a lousy team. It is hard to say exactly what went wrong, but it’s clear that mentally, the team isn’t in a good place. There are ups and downs in the NBA, and every night, surprises happen. They will need to forget about the game and just come in and hope to avenge that one by beating Cleveland.
ODDS: The Cavaliers are 7.5-point underdogs, as the Pels are favored.
Cavs Seeking Road Victory
There have been some great days in Cleveland this year. This is going to be a tough one for so many in the organization, as they deal with the passing of longtime great announcer Joe Tait. The team’s current PXP guys, John Michael and Tim Alcorn were both very close with Tait. It’s going to be an emotional broadcast this evening.
But for the game itself, the Cavs should feel good about their chances. They have beaten Philly and Brooklyn both two times, and a team like New Orleans is nothing in comparison to them. Nance is going to be able to cover Zion, and his long frame will make life harder for him. Jarrett Allen has the advantage down low against Steven Adams.
Collin Sexton will have it tough going against Lonzo Ball and Eric Bledsoe, but top defenders have struggled to slow him all season. The case likely remains the same.
Pels Looking for Redemption
If you lose by 30+ points to the worst team in the NBA in your first game in over a week, the chances are that it won’t go over well in the locker room. Not much has been said about Stan Van Gundy’s first year in NOLA, but it is clear that the team is not at all a contender. They are contending for nothing.
It stinks to see it because they’ve got two All-Stars in Zion and Brandon Ingram. They have a talented point guard in Lonzo Ball. But every other player they have, other than those three + Josh Hart, are inconsistent on both ends. They are going to have to seriously reshape the roster. That’s all on David Griffin.
Cavs Get the W
7.5-point underdogs? It doesn’t matter. The Cavs are hungry and want to show the league out of the break how dangerous they can be. At this time last year, JB Bickerstaff took over for John Beilein, and they went 5-6 over the next 11 games. They’ll be even better now.
Pick: Cavs +7.5 points
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