LeBron & Cavaliers -5.5 vs. Pelicans for NBA Picks

David Lawrence

Monday, November 10, 2014 1:17 PM GMT

Monday, Nov. 10, 2014 1:17 PM GMT

The New Orleans Pelicans have won two straight with their latest being in quite impressive fashion. On Saturday, they went into San Antonio and knocked off the Spurs. They now find themselves as a six-point road dog on the NBA betting lines in Cleveland.

The New Orleans Pelicans Can Win Because…
They are soaring with confidence after beating the San Antonio Spurs on Saturday night in San Antonio. The Pelicans got 27 points and 11 rebounds, plus a game-winning basket, from their star player, Anthony Davis. The Pelicans watched Davis become exactly the kind of player he needs to be in order for New Orleans to make the playoffs. This was a huge step in the right direction for a team that is trying to coalesce and become strong enough to crack the postseason in the ruthless Western Conference. Last season, 48 wins were not enough for the Phoenix Suns in the West. They were still sitting home despite being 14 games over .500, so New Orleans knows what kind of a challenge it faces if it wants to break through. However, a win on the road against the defending champions could do just that.

What should also help the Pelicans is that Cleveland is still struggling early in the season. The Cavaliers are showing how unreliable their supporting cast is around LeBron James. Dion Waiters is embroiled in a national anthem controversy relating to his Muslim faith. Kyrie Irving has really struggled at point guard and has been the subject of media scrutiny regarding his relationship with LeBron. Cleveland’s offense isn’t even averaging 100 points right now. The Cavs are 25th in rebounding, 29th in assists, and 21st in scoring defense. They have a lot of issues to deal with.

 

The Cleveland Cavaliers Can Win Because…
They're back at home after a tough four-game road trip to Chicago, Utah, Portland, and Denver. The Cavaliers split those four games and went through a lot of trials as this lineup tries to learn how to play together. An early-season road trip should not have been expected to go smoothly. The whole Cleveland season should not have been expected to cruise along, for that matter. A team finds out a lot about itself on the road, so that four-game trip, which took over a full week, gave this team a chance to encounter some problems and work through them. The Cavaliers have already shown that when something goes bad, they can come back the next day and respond well. Cleveland lost at home on opening night to the New York Knicks. The next night, the Cavs defeated Chicago. The Cavs lost to Portland and Utah, but they used tunnel vision and then beat Denver. Don’t judge the Cavs based on the first five games. They’re going to be at home, and they should feed off a crowd that is very hungry to see a winner. The tone of this home stand should be very different for Cleveland compared to its just-ended road trip.

 

Outlook
The Pelicans are coming off a huge road win, so don’t expect them to pull off another one. Meanwhile, Cleveland has been a dicey bet but looked like they figured some things out in their latest win in Denver. They scored 110 points and played one of their best games of the early season.

If this were the first game of the season, the NBA odds here would be Cleveland -10. Since the Cavs have struggled and the Pelicans have exceeded expectations, we find a shorter number. Take the Cavs with your NBA picks.

Free NBA Pick: Cavaliers -5.5 at The 5Dimes

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