Pacers vs. Cavs Game 1 Pick
Will the Cleveland Cavaliers look like a different team now that the NBA Playoffs are getting started? Can they cover against the Indiana Pacers in Game 1 today at 3PM ET?
According to oddsmakers at BetDSI, the Cavaliers are favored in today’s game, as they are getting odds of -8.5 points against the Pacers. The over/under total for the contest is listed at 210.5 points. Cleveland won three of the four meetings this season, but the two teams each went 2-2 against the spread in the four games.
The Cavaliers are backing into the playoffs, as they lost their last four games to finish 51-31 on the season and take the second seed in the East. Cleveland is 36-43-3 against the spread this season as well. On the season, Cleveland averages 110.3 points per game on offense while giving up 107.2 on defense. Over their last five games, Cleveland is putting up 108.6 on offense but allowing 110.6 on defense. LeBron James averaged 26.4 points, 8.6 rebounds and 8.7 assists per game to lead the team while Kyrie Irving has added 25.2 points and 5.8 assists per contest.
Indiana comes into the postseason hot, winning five straight while covering in six straight. The Pacers are 42-40 overall and 39-42-1 against the spread. Indiana is averaging 105.1 points per game on offense for the season while allowing 105.3 on defense. Over their last five games, the Pacers are putting up 112.6 on offense and allowing just 97.6 on defense. Paul George is leading the team with 23.7 points and 6.6 rebounds per game while Jeff Teague averages 15.3 points and 7.8 assists per contest.
Many believe, myself included, that with the playoffs starting the Cleveland Cavaliers will return to old form and look like the team to beat in the East. LeBron is too competitive for this team to just continue to look awful. While the Pacers have been hot, they don’t have the talent to compete with the Cavs. If Cleveland struggles today, it is a real sign that the Cavs are going to be in trouble this postseason.
NBA DAILY PREDICTION: CLEVELAND CAVALIERS -8.5