NBA Picks: LeBron, Heat return to Cleveland for last meeting

Miami Heat at Cleveland Cavaliers, Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, OH
Tuesday, March 29, 2011, 7:00 pm Eastern, TV:  SUN, FSOH
Opening Line: Heat -13
Current Line: Heat -13
Opening Total: 197.5
Current Total: 197.5
Money Line: Heat -1500 / Cavs +1000

Cavaliers Heat NBA Game Preview
LeBron James and the Heat visit Cleveland for the final time this season on Tuesday.

The Miami Heat (51-22) will go for a season sweep of the Cleveland Cavaliers (14-58) on Tuesday when native son LeBron James makes his second trip back to Quicken Loans Arena to face his former team for the fourth time.  James and the Heat (-13) also have the opportunity to pick up a full game in the standings on Chicago and Boston after both teams lost on Monday.

Miami is tied with the Celtics for the second seed in the Eastern Conference playoff race but would lose the tiebreaker after dropping the first three games of the season series.  The Heat have one more meeting with Boston on April 10, which could still mean something if the teams remain close.  Right now, the Cavaliers are the focus as they start a four-game road trip.

None of the opponents on Miami’s road trip have more than 23 wins, and three of them have 18 or less.  The Heat have won 12 games in a row against teams with losing records by an average of 12 points along with eight of nine overall following a season-high five-game losing streak.  However, they have still failed to cover the spread in four of their past six games.

Cleveland was 7-10 when James visited for the first time as an opponent back on December 2 and saw him explode for 24 of his game-high 38 points in the third quarter of a 118-90 Miami victory.   The Cavs have obviously struggled quite a bit since then, enduring an NBA-record 26-game losing streak at one point.  They have lost five of their last six games and nine of their past 11 heading into the final regular-season meeting with their former franchise player, knowing they will be missing out on the postseason for the first time in six years without him.

The UNDER has cashed in each of Cleveland’s last eight games along with 10 of 11.  The team is 4-7 against the spread during that stretch and has covered only one of the three meetings with the Heat so far, losing all of them by an average margin of more than 20 points.

Miami is coming off a 125-119 home win over Houston on Sunday, as the Big Three of James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh became just the second trio of teammates to finish with at least 30 points and 10 rebounds.  James led the way with 33 points and 10 rebounds while Wade had 30 and 11 and Bosh added 31 and 12.  The OVER cashed in the second straight game for the Heat, who have also seen the total go OVER in all three previous meetings with the Cavs this season.

Now that you have read this NBA basketball betting preview featuring the Cavaliers & Heat, check out the NBA basketball odds on this and all the games to compare the best lines at multiple sportsbooks.

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