Shorthanded Cavaliers Take On Star-Studded Nets
The play-in tournament gets underway on Tuesday and the winner of this Cleveland Cavaliers-Brooklyn Nets game will be locked into the postseason as the No. 7 seed. They’ll play the Boston Celtics in the first round.
The loser would drop down to a final play-in game, in which they would have to win or face elimination. The Cavaliers have completely outperformed expectations this year while the Nets have underperformed.
Which team can snag the seventh seed? Let’s take a closer look at this NBA game betting preview.
Injuries Hurting Cavaliers At The Worst Time
Cleveland has weathered the storm throughout the entire season in regard to injuries, but those injuries are starting to pile up now.
They’ve lost Collin Sexton, Ricky Rubio, and Dean Wade for the remainder of the season. To top it off, Jarrett Allen is also missing time with a finger injury and rookie Evan Mobley wasn’t 100 percent for the season finale.
In spite of the many injuries, they were still the sixth-best team in adjusted net rating before the All-Star break. Unfortunately, they fell to 13th afterward but stayed close to the top with a barrage of players coming in and out of the lineup.
The question is, who will fill the void that Allen leaves behind in the paint? Mobley can hold his own, but Brooklyn may stretch him too thin.
Nets Forced To Rely Upon Stars
It’s no secret that Brooklyn is only competitive right now because of its star players. Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are the only reason this team has stayed alive.
Unfortunately, without them playing at their best, they quickly fall apart. Irving rejoins the team for home games despite vaccination status, which is huge in this one, meaning he will be available.
When both of these guys are on the floor, Brooklyn has a +13.2 point differential and they score 124.8 points every 100 possessions. Statistically, the Nets can outscore anybody in the league. Couple this with playing a banged-up Cavaliers squad, and they have a shot at a playoff spot.
Cavaliers vs. Nets Head-to-Head
The Nets won the first matchup against the Cavaliers before losing the second. However, they won the season series by beating them a couple of days ago in the second to last game of the regular season.
Cavaliers vs. Nets Game Information
- Game: Cavaliers (44-38) vs Nets (44-38)
- Location: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, NY
- Day/Time: Tuesday, April 12th, 7:00 p.m. ET
- Cavaliers vs Nets Live stream: NBA Game Pass
Cavaliers vs. Nets Betting Lines
Cavaliers vs. Nets Prediction
If you bet online, you have to know the trends here. The Cavaliers have just nine wins in their last 26 games as they’ve faded down the stretch. Meanwhile, the Nets have won four straight and 12 of 17. This game would look much different if the Cavaliers were fully healthy, however, they aren’t right now.
The Nets walked into this season with aspirations to be champions and even though their record isn’t good, you can’t deny their star power. Durant and Irving are a force to be reckoned with and it’s hard to imagine anybody in Cleveland outdueling them.
This is going to be a close game due to the win-or-go-home type of atmosphere that it will provide. In the end, the Nets look like the safer choice for NBA picks due to their experienced veterans in Irving and Durant.
It’s a big spread to lay in the sportsbook but the Nets are the better choice.