A Closer Look at the Atlanta at Cleveland NBA Betting Prediction

Posted by Kenny Bell on Thursday,April 6, 2017 10:02, EDT in

It’s a potential first-round playoff preview on Friday night when Atlanta visits Cleveland in their third meeting of the regular season – they also play on Sunday. The Cavs are going to finish either No. 1 or 2 in the East. The Hawks could be anywhere from No. 5-8 or out altogether. They will be sizable basketball betting underdogs here.

Atlanta vs Cleveland NBA Betting Pick & Preview

When: Friday, April 7, 7:30 PM ET
Where: Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland
TV: NBA TV
Stream: NBA.tv
RadioAtlanta / Cleveland
NBA Odds: Cavs favored by TBA

Why Bet On Atlanta?

This will be the second of a back-to- back for Atlanta after hosting Boston on Thursday so the Hawks could do the Cavs a favor by beating the Celtics. Atlanta entered that one on a two-game skid. Thabo Sefolosha (groin) missed his sixth straight game Thursday. Taurean Prince will continue to start in his absence. The Hawks did get back All-Star Paul Millsap in Sunday’s loss to Brooklyn after the forward had missed seven games in a row due to a sore knee.

Atlanta is fifth in the NBA in spg (8.3), while ranking second in forcing turnovers as foes are committing 15.5 miscues per game (leading to 16.5 points). The Hawks are also fifth in the league in opponent FG% (.445) and ninth in opponent ppg (104.0).

Dwight Howard has pulled down at least 10 rebounds in 19 consecutive games played, his longest streak since 22 straight contests from 2/20/13-4/5/13 and the longest Hawks’ streak since Kevin Willis (40) from 12/14/91-3/11/92. Howard has recorded a double-double in 10 straight games, the longest streak by a Hawk since Willis (21) from 1/24/92-3/11/92. Bob Pettit owns the Hawks’ record for most consecutive double-doubles in franchise history with 42 in the 1960-61 season.

Point guard Dennis Schroder is averaging 23.0 ppg (138), 7.2 apg (43), 5.0 rpg (30) and 1.3 spg (8) on .443 FG% (58-131), .417 3FG% (10-24) and .923 FT% (12-13) over the last six games; scoring in double-figures in each contest, including four 20-point nights.

Atlanta has held opponents below 20 points in the fourth quarter 19 times this year and is 31-7 when leading entering the final frame.

Why Bet On Cleveland?

The Cavs will be without their best rounder and one of their few rim protectors here in power forward Tristan Thompson. He suffered a thumb injury in Tuesday’s win over Orlando. X-rays were negative, but the Cavs are having him get an MRI. Thompson, though, sat Wednesday and won’t play here. The team might just rest him until the playoffs.

Thompson had played in 447 straight games, the longest active one in the NBA. The all-time NBA consecutive games streak belongs to A.C. Green at 1,192, the equivalent of 14.5 seasons. With Thompson on the shelf, we’ll likely see either Channing Frye or Richard Jefferson move into the starting five and Larry Sanders should into the rotation.

It figures this injury would hit the Cavs as they just got whole. Kyle Korver returned from an 11-game absence and scored 11 points with three 3-pointers in 12 minutes of Tuesday’s win over the Magic.

The Cavs have scored 120 points or more in 22 games this season (21-1 record). That’s more than twice as many 120-point games the Cavs had last season (nine). Against the Magic, the Cavs became just the 3rd team in NBA history to make 1,000 three-pointers in a single season (2015-16 Warriors – 1,077; 2016-17 Rockets – 1,109). Cleveland is a perfect 10-0 on the season when they hold an opponent to less than .400 from the field.

Cleveland won the most recent game vs. Atlanta, 135-130 on March 3. Kyrie Irving finished with a game- high 43 points on 14-21 (.667) shooting, a perfect 10-10 clip from the foul line, two rebounds, a game-high nine assists, four steals and one block in 36 minutes. LeBron James had 38 points on 14-27 (.519) shooting, a 6-10 (.600) mark from beyond the arc, a game-high 13 rebounds and eight assists.

Atlanta vs Cleveland NBA Betting Pick: Atlanta Hawks

The road team has won both meetings this season but that streak ends Friday as long as the Cavs do play James and Irving.