Cleveland Cavaliers (9-6) at Detroit Pistons (8-5), 7:30 pm Eastern Wednesday
by Zman of Predictem.com
The two teams that met for the Eastern Conference championship last season hook up for the first time this season when the Detroit Pistons host the Cleveland Cavaliers Wednesday night in Motown.
NBA bookies have Detroit posted as nine-point home favorites for Wednesday’s game, with a total of 190. Also, the Pistons are listed at anywhere from -370 to -530 on various Vegas moneylines, with Cleveland getting between +290 and +400 as road underdogs.
Cleveland came back from an 0-2 deficit to beat Detroit in six games last spring to win the Eastern Conference. But the Pistons had taken three of four games from the Cavs during the regular-season. So overall these two teams split 10 games last season. But Cleveland kept several of their losses close, and ended up covering point spread in eight of those 10 games. Also, the o/u went 4-6 over those 10 meetings, which, excluding two overtime periods, averaged 170 points per.
The Cavaliers pulled off a big win Tuesday night, beating the then-11-1 Boston Celtics 109-104 in OT. The Great LeBron James led the way with 38 points, while Drew Gooden put up 24 points and 13 boards and Zydrunas Ilgauskas 15 and 14 as Cleveland won its fourth game in a row.
Detroit, meanwhile, has lost three of its last five games after falling at home to Utah 103-93 on Sunday. So these two teams enter Wednesday’s game tied atop the Central Division, a half-game ahead of the third-place Milwaukee Bucks.
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The Cavs are 7-8 against the spread this season, 5-3 both straight up and ATS on the road.
The Pistons are 5-8 vs. the numbers this season, 4-1 SU but 2-3 against the spread at home.
This season, Cleveland is shooting 45% from the field as a team, 37% from 3-point range and 70% from the free-thrown line.
Detroit is shooting 46% from the floor, 36% from long range and 71% from the line.
The Cavaliers have out-rebounded 12 of their 15 opponents this season, and own the best per-game rebounding margin in the league at +5.5. The Pistons, meanwhile, are getting out-boarded by .6 per game.
But Detroit leads the league with its 1.9 assist-to-turnover ratio, while Cleveland ranks 14th at 1.4.
And while the Pistons are holding opponents to 44% FG shooting, the Cavs are allowing foes to shoot 46%.
The Sagarin PREDICTOR ratings at USAToday.com ranks Cleveland 12th at 91.8, Detroit 15th at 89.1.
The o/u is 10-5 in Cavs games this season, which are averaging 205 points per, while the totals are 7-6 in Pistons games, which are averaging 192 points.
Zman’s Pick: Cleveland is coming off an emotional win last night and then had to travel to Detroit. Take the Pistons at -8.5 to the bank.