Cavaliers vs. Bulls NBA Picks: Cleveland to Keep Its Winning Streak on the Road

Joe Gavazzi

Thursday, February 12, 2015 6:57 PM GMT

The Bulls are hosts to the Cavaliers in tonight's only scheduled matchup. Which team will our expert handicapper pick? Read on to find out! 

Cleveland Cavaliers (-1) vs. Chicago Bulls 8:05 ET TNT
The Cleveland Cavaliers travel to Chicago tonight to meet the Chicago Bulls for an 8:05 ET start as televised by TNT. This game will conclude the 1st half of the season with the All-Star game scheduled for this Sunday. More importantly, the recent run by Cleveland has pulled them to within 1 game in the loss column for the division lead against Chicago. On the injury front, a pair of key players are questionable for this game. For Cleveland, Kevin Love left last night’s game with a scratched eyeball in the 2nd quarter. For Chicago, all-star guard, Jimmy Butler (Shoulder) is questionable for the game, while guard Kirk Hinrich (toe) is downgraded to be expected to miss the game tonight. These teams have met previously this season with Cleveland winning both games 108-94 on their home court and 114-108 here in Chicago. Each team enters in good current form.  Let’s examine the probabilities of the winner in this contest.

The Chicago Bulls have underachieved on the defensive end this season. This is a team who allowed just 93.7 PPG last year (the best in the NBA).  This season, the Bulls are allowing 99.1 PPG.  Issues are the continuing leg ailments of PG Rose and the insertion of Gasol into the lineup, who is more noted for his play on the offensive end of the floor. Recently, the Bulls went 0-3 SU ATS, allowing 108 PPG.  But, they have turned that around to enter this contest on a 3-0 SU, 2-1 ATS run, albeit against losing teams New Orleans, Orlando and Sacramento. Nonetheless, in their favor has been a defense which keyed those victories by allowing just 85 PPG. Chicago has long been known as an excellent road team.  Thus, it is not surprising that their 19-9 SU road record is far superior to their mediocre record of 14-11 SU at home, including just 8-16 ATS. It will be a big step for them to overcome a Cleveland team who is playing their best ball of the season.

We won with the Cavs yet again last night, boosting their recent mark to 14-1 SU, 12-3 ATS. They had a dominating 113-93 victory against Miami, a team who had beaten them 10/11 previous games (all with LeBron James in a Miami uniform). Cleveland held Miami to 40% shooting and was +7 on the NBA odds boards. For the Cavs, no fewer than 7 players scored in double digits last night. Cleveland has now scored 99 or more points in 14 of their last 15 games. In fact, in their winning streak, Cleveland is averaging over 108 PPG.  

The Chicago momentum of the 3-game winning streak with solid defense must be taken with a grain of salt, as it has been against sub-.500 competition. The Cleveland winning streak is for real with new additions Mozgov, JR Smith and Shumpert blending perfectly with the scoring trio of James, Love and Irving.  In the Cleveland winning streak, they are 4-1 SU ATS on the road with each of those 4 victories by 5 or more points. We continue to ride the Cleveland momentum for our NBA picks as we close out the first half of the season in style.

NBA Pick: Cleveland Cavaliers -2 at 5Dimes

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