Atlanta must face league's best sans Korver

Atlanta must face league's best sans Korver

Cleveland is the NBA’s last remaining undefeated team at 6-0. That’sparticularly bad news for an Atlanta group still trying to integrate a decent number of new parts.

The two Eastern Conference rivals meet tonight, with a 7 p.m. ET tip at Quicken Loans Arena. Online sports book Bovada.lv gives Tyronn Lue’s crew odds of -360 to take care of business at home. The Hawks, on the other hand, represent +280 underdogs.

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On Friday, the Cavaliers survived a scare at Philadelphia. LeBron James’ all-around brilliance helped offset Kyrie Irving’s 3-of-17 shooting in a 102-101 victory. The four-time MVP’s averaging 22.8 points, 10.7 assists and 8.8 rebounds in 2016-17.

Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer once again finds himself relying on contributions from everyone on the roster. It’s a new-look bunch, however, with Dwight Howard and Dennis Schroder replacing Al Horford and Jeff Teague in the starting lineup. Old reliables Kyle Korver and Paul Millsap do remain on the scene, even though the former’s expected to miss this evening’s tilt following the birth of his son over the weekend.

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Frankly, Korver’s absence could be just the ticket for the Cavs’ second double-digit triumph of the campaign. If J.R. Smith’s not busy hounding Atlanta’s (4-2) premier gunner, he should possess that much more energy on offensive end. Bank on Cleveland to capture yet another win in the series.

 

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