LA Lakers @ Cleveland Cavaliers: Under 221.5 Total Points – 10/11
We saw what LeBron can do against his old teams on Sunday night. The Heat were well and truly fried by their old leader and now he’s back in Cleveland.
The Cavs should be afraid.
But then, everything’s going so bad for them already that maybe this’ll take on more of a celebration vibe. Time to remember the good times – he did snatch a title for the city this time around.
Kevin Love’s still out, JR Smith is on his way out and the #Cavs are already out of contention for the postseason on 2-13.
The great man could put on a show again, which makes picking this line dicey, but Cleveland’s scoring is through the floor this year without him – they’ve the fourth lowest average points per game in the league and have hit three-figures just three times in their last eight games.
The Lakers, though high-scoring, have tended to be overestimated by gamblers in betting the total points line, so the under on 221 is our pick here despite the emotional stroryline around the game.
Portland Trail Blazers @ Milwaukee Bucks: Trail Blazers +6 – 10/11
This is such a tough call. Portland are heading to Milwaukee after beating the Knicks last night in a close game at MSG. They’re one of the stronger defensive teams in the league and are 11-6 against the spread, and have the best points differential against teams .500 or over this season.
They’re good, basically.
Milwaukee have been better, and, especially at home, look very intimidating. But their form in the last fortnight has plateaued, with them 5-4 in their last nine on the handicap. The bookies may have their handle on the Bucks now.
That quick turnaround for the Blazers is the only doubt I have about them. They’ve already played one back-to-back pair of road games and covered the second leg at Houston. I think they’re good enough to put it up to the Bucks’ offence, and they already thrashed them in Portland earlier in the season, so I’m picking them +6 here and holding my breath.
Oklahoma City Thunder @ Golden State Warriors: Under 220.5 total Points – 10/11
Hallelujah! There’s some drama in the Bay Area!
The Warriors have lived through their own Texas massacre (no chainsaws involved) in the past week, losing to Houston, Dallas and San Antonio thanks to injuries to Steph Curry and Draymond Greem and lockerroom disharmony revolving around Kevin Durant.
We might have a championship race after all.
The Thunder have started to rumble after a desperate start to the season. Having Russell Westbrook back helps, though it’t their defensive improvement that stands out.
This game comes down to trends. Golden State have been overestimated regularly through the season, and the injuries just amplifies that. OKC on the road have seen an over just once all season. The under on the total points line is our pick.
*All odds correct at time of posting