The Cleveland Cavaliers are going through a very rough patch at the moment, but any wise NBA fan would know that you should never count out a LeBron James lead team. After going 5-5 in their last 10 games, the Cavs have their sights set on the struggling Orlando Magic. One thing I should point out about this matchup, is that the Magic actually defeated the Cavs during the first week of the season.
by Brian Anderson – Wannamakeabet Staff Writer
Even after a surprise victory over the defending Eastern Conference Champions, the Magic know what they are up against. With Isaiah Thomas set to start his first game as a Cavalier, this already stacked team will have more firepower on the floor than they have had all season. Thomas has only played one game thus far, where he scored a quick 17 points in 19 minutes of action. With Derrick Rose out with a nagging ankle injury, Thomas is expected to get the green light to fire at will. We all know James will do what he normally does – dominate.
As of right now, the Cavs average close to 110 points per game as a team. The Magic themselves are averaging just under 105 points per game. With Thomas’ addition, Cleveland’s offensive numbers should be taking a notable hike upward in the near future. What really seems to be everyone’s main concern for the Cavs, is that they believe Thomas will be too huge – or tiny – of a liability on defense. Anyone under 6 feet tall will consistently have an issue against larger players on the basketball court. It just so happens that Thomas is so much of an outstanding offensive star, that you can forgot about what he can and cannot do defensively.
The oddsmakers currently have the Cavaliers as -9.5 point favorites. This would be a much larger number if this were not a road game for Cleveland. Still, I believe location won’t be an issue, as James and Thomas both have something to prove. After a huge loss to Kyrie Irving and the Boston Celtics on national television, this team wants to wash down that bad taste with a big victory. There are doubters out there who are questioning whether this years Cavs team is as good as they were a year ago. I’m sure James isn’t ignoring everything negative that is being said, so this only helps bettors who are looking to take Cleveland to win by 10 or more points.
My Pick: Cleveland Cavaliers -9.5