Irving aims to continue hot play vs. Orlando

Irving aims to continue hot stretch vs. Orlando

The Cavaliers have defeated the Magic 14 straight times. Could the second half of back-to-back games, though, make tonight’s meeting in northeast Ohio surprisingly close?

Just 21 or so hours after prevailing in Toronto, Cleveland returns home to battle Frank Vogel’s scuffling club. Online sports book Bovada.lv gives LeBron James & Co. odds of -1100 to improve to 3-0, whereas Orlando represents a +750 underdog. The over/under point total holds steady at 204.

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Despite missing Channing Frye and Iman Shumpert on Friday, the Cavs squeezed out a 94-91 win over their foe in last year’s Eastern Conference finals. With James spending the bulk of his time in the post, point guard Kyrie Irving once again led the team in scoring with 26 points. No. 23 added 2_ to go along with eight rebounds and seven assists.

So far, Tyronn Lue’s troops aren’t exactly filling it up from the field. Yet that may not matter against the hapless Magic. Orlando has already absorbed a pair of blowout losses, and the squad’s only 12-30 on the road since the beginning of the 2014-15 campaign.

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The Raptors forced the Cavaliers to grind out 48 minutes, though, so we’re not anticipating an offensive bonanza here. A double-digit victory, of course, remains a strong possibility. But it’s unwise to think Lue will push his main cast members unnecessarily in the first week of the season.

 

SATURDAY NBA FREE PICK: MAGIC/CAVALIERS UNDER 204 POINTS

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