The NBA season rolls on and we go straight in early on this time with a pick in order to try and take advantage of some poor lines early on.
CLE Cavaliers -4 to beat BOS Celtics @ 1.70 (MarathonBet) – 3 points
The Cleveland Cavaliers have finally found some of their mojo now and starting to interact well with each other as they head to Boston to snap a 3 game losing streak, albeit James and Love weren’t here last time around.
Cleveland led by James, Irving and Love have finally found the great passing lanes and understanding between each other that has seen them win 2 straight games against Denver and New Orleans despite being down at HT against New Orleans. Irving is averaging 22 points and 5 assists, Love averaging 19 points and 10 boards, where as James is doing pretty much everything. James will be instrumental as he has loved playing Celtics averaging 35.8 points, 10.4 rebounds and 6.4 assists over his last 5 games against them. More important contributions in recent games have come from Tristan Thompson, Anderson Varejao and Dion Waiters. Waiters will face a late fitness test to see if he is ready to go tonight.
Boston have relied a lot on the experience of Rondo and Jeff Green who have been extremely instrumental in their minor successes this campaign. Despite tanking last year, this years Celtics are putting on more of a fight already beating Chicago (albeit slightly weakened), Indiana and Brooklyn. However when the bigger teams come in, that is when they struggle to match up the quality against sides like Dallas, Houston and Toronto. Boston are a poor defensive team, as seen by the number of points that they allow their opponents in over 106, ranking them 27th in the NBA this campaign.
Cleveland should come to town to win this game, as they need to start getting over .500 in their results to march to a playoff position.
SA Spurs -6 to beat LA Lakers @ 1.67 (Bet365) – 2.5 points
SA Spurs Under 100 v LA Lakers @ 1.86 (Bet365) – 3 points (#INPLAYMAGIC)
The Spurs are now back to full health with almost all of their players from the finals last year now available with the exception of Paddy Mills who was already set for a few months out and Splitter and Belenelli who are both day to day. The big 4 of the Spurs in Duncan, Ginobili, Parker and Leonard are now all healthy and will be looking to dominate against a weaker Lakers team who has just won 1 game this campaign against a poor Bobcats team.
Spurs main agenda is to be freshly rested for such games, and after 3 days of rest now, they should be raring to go tonight against the Lakers team. They will feel particularly confident of beating a strong Warriors and Clippers team on Back to Back nights with all of their top players contributing in a very important way.
Lakers have been a one man gang with only Kobe Bryant being the main contributor for this team. They have lost to all good teams like New Orleans, Memphis, Phoenix and Golden State by an average of 6 points at minimum. Other than Kobe, only Jordan Hill and Carlos Boozer have been decent contributors on a nightly basis. Jeremy Lin has been largely inconsistent, and it will be hard for him tonight against Tony Parker to contribute in a big way.
I expect the Spurs defense to be too much for the Lakers, and after winning 2 straight, they should be back on track to start their winning streak back to try and get to the top of their division.
HOU Rockets -16 to beat PHI 76ers @ 1.83 (Bet365) – 2.5 points
Houston Rockets come into this game against a struggling Philadelphia 76ers who have yet to win in a single game season going 0-8 so far. They have also lost by an average of 27 points per game so far this campaign and that was seen by last nights 53 point loss against the Dallas Mavericks.
The Rockets are going to come out in similar fashion with 2 top scorers in the league in Howard and Harden looking to dominate to take the attack to the 76ers to try and seal this game in the 1st half itself. The motivation within the troops is expected to be even lower after last night’s poor showing. The 76ers used 11 players last night and have struggled shooting just 30% from the field, which is extremely poor. For the 76ers only Tony Wroten has been a good scorer in double digits on average, while the return of Michael Carter-Williams added a strong performance scoring 19 last night, which was on his first night back. He should come of the bench to ease himself on his return, and he might not get a strong amounts of minutes tonight. While they have scored over 100 only once this campaign, on average their highest score has been 96 points, which will not be good against a strong offensive minded team like Houston.
Houston just smashed the TWolves a couple of nights in Mexico by 12 points; and I expect them to easily smash the 76ers tonight by at least 20 points.
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