NBA Picks and Predictions: Cleveland Cavaliers at Memphis Grizzlies
Betting odds courtesy of 5dimes
The Cleveland Cavaliers have won seven of its past 10 contests to move to within 3.5 games of Atlanta for the 8th playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. The Cavs are just 9-21 on the road, however, and will travel to face Memphis in a game NBA oddsmakers at 5dimes are favoring the home team Grizzlies by 9.5 points.
Cleveland has improved since adding Luol Deng to its team. Deng has averaged 14.8 points and 5.2 rebounds per game in is 24 games in Cleveland, and if he can get accustomed to the system and resume scoring in the high teens, he could be the second option Kyrie Irving has needed. Irving is posting 21.4 points and 6.4 assists per game this season. Shooting guard Dion Waiters is developing well and is averaging 14.3 points per game. Waiters is questionable with a hyperextended knee.
The Cavs are a team that could come together to be a threat in the playoffs, or could easily fritter into the lottery. It won an impressive 114-104 game over OKC on Feb 26 and blew out Utah 99-79 Feb 28, but the Cavs face playoff teams in nine of its next 10 games.
Memphis is a tough defensive team and ranks 3rd in the NBA in defense (94.9 points allowed per game). The Grizz rank low offensively, though, generating just 95.2 points per game. The team is comprised of tough veterans like Mike Conley, Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol, but it lacks the premier superstar to go toe-to-toe with the likes of OKC, or even Houston. The Grizz have as tough a frontcourt as any, but losing Rudy Gay did hurt the team a little, as record testifies.
CLE Trends: 5-0 ATS in last 5 when opponent allows 100 points in previous game; 7-0 ATS in last 7 following an SU win; 5-0 ATS in last 5 road games.
MEM Trends: OVER 4-0 in last 4 home games vs teams with losing road records; OVER 5-0 in last 5 overall; 0-6 ATS in last 6 home games vs teams with losing road records.
Head-to-head: OVER 7-1 in last 8 meeting in Memphis; Cavs 6-1 ATS in last 7 meetings in Memphis; Cavs 6-1 ATS in last 7 meetings.