The Atlanta Hawks will look to build on their impressive win the last time out when they visit the reeling Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night. Atlanta is in 11th place in the Eastern Conference, 1.5 games behind Charlotte for the eighth and final playoff berth. Cleveland is sitting in 14th place in the 15-team east standings and comes into this matchup absolutely reeling.
Are the Hawks a lock sportsbook betting pick to get the road win and cover? Will Cleveland come up with a big effort at home to snap out of the ugly funk they’ve been in for the last three weeks?
Check out the NBA odds for this affair when they go live.
Atlanta Hawks (13-17) vs Cleveland Cavaliers (10-21)
When: Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021 at 7:00 PM ET
Where: Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, Cleveland, OH
TV: NBALP, FSO, FSSE-ATL
Radio: WTAM/WMMS/WNZN, WZGC
Check out our value-packed NBA Division odds.
Hawks Look To Build On Big Wins
Atlanta (15-15 ATS) has won two of its last three games including a 122-114 win over the Boston Celtics on Wednesday and a 123-115 win over the Denver Nuggets on Sunday night. Trae Young had a monster game with 35 points and 15 assists. Clint Capela added 22 points and 10 rebounds in the statement-making win.
“Obviously, Jokic is a top two or three MVP,” Capela said. “So I really challenged myself tonight to eliminate him as good as I could because I know he can have the type of game that can help his team.”
Atlanta was missing De’Andre Hunter, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Kris Dunn, and Rajon Rondo but overcame their absences as Young shot 10 for 19 from the field and 11 of 13 from the free-throw line.
“I thought he did a great job of the entire floor game on both ends,” Hawks assistant coach Nate McMillan said. “I thought he worked hard on the defensive end of the floor. He had Murray to start out the game and did a good job of just trying to work to stay in front of him, fight over the screens. Offensively we wanted to force misses and get out in transition. We were able to do that.”
Atlanta is averaging 113.3 points per game (14th) on 45.3 percent shooting from the field (21st) and 35.4 percent from three-point distance (22nd). Defensively, the Hawks are allowing 113.2 points per game (21st) on 46.2 percent shooting from the field (13th) and 34.6 percent from beyond the arc (2nd).
Struggling Cavaliers Completely Lost
Cleveland (10-21 ATS) was off to an encouraging 10-11 start but has dropped a whopping 10 straight heading into the new week. The Cavs were on the wrong end of an embarrassing 117-101 home loss against Oklahoma City on Sunday.
Collin Sexton scored a team-high 27 points and Jarrett Allen shot a perfect 11 for 11 to finish with a career-high 26 points and 17 rebounds for the Cavaliers. Cleveland hasn’t won since beating lowly Minnesota on Feb. 1.
“We just have to be better,” Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff said. “We’ve got to make open shots in order to survive. We’ve got to guard better and be more physical. We have to be better.”
The Cavaliers are averaging a paltry 103.8 points per game (29th) on 44.9 percent shooting from the field (25th) and 33.5 percent from beyond the arc (30th). Defensively, Cleveland is allowing 113.4 points per game (22nd) on 48.6 percent shooting from the field (29th) and 40.5 percent from three-point distance (30th).
Analysis and Prediction
The Hawks have looked fantastic in winning two of their last three while beating two legitimate NBA Finals contenders. Cleveland’s defense has been virtually non-existent with the Cavs allowing at least 117 points in each of their last 10 games and at least 128 points in four of those contests.
Collin Sexton is having an all-star caliber campaign by putting up a team-high 22.9 points per game, but veteran forwards Kevin Love (9.5 ppg) and Larry Nance Jr. (9.3 ppg) are barely contributing anything at this point.
Atlanta has a whopping seven players averaging double figures in scoring. The Hawks are 2-1 ATS over their last three and a decent 4-4 ATS over their last eight. Cleveland has failed to cover the spread in 10 straight and is fading faster than a pair of well-worn blue jeans.
Trey Young will be the best player on the floor on Tuesday night. Simply put, this Tuesday night matchup looks like a game Atlanta should win by nearly double digits.