Jordan’s NBA Picks: 45-30
Cleveland (19-58 SU & 36-39 ATS) at Phoenix (17-60 SU & 34-43 ATS)
Monday, 10:00 PM
Free NBA Pick: Suns 1H
Best Line Offered: Pinnacle
Not only do we need to contend with the fact that both teams would be better off losing, but there are also some injury questions marks surrounding Kevin Love and the Cavs. With Deandre Ayton already ruled out, if Love sits, what kind of value does that unlock for these NBA Odds?
Devin Booker’s Hot Streak
If there is one bright side to this game, it’s Devin Booker. The former Kentucky Wildcat has been on a three-game surge of absolute unconscious scoring and tuning in to see whether it continues might be a silver lining to an otherwise unwatchable game.
Booker has put up games of 59, 50, and 48 points over his last three games and he also notched a 32-point performance in the game before his most recent three. His point total across the industry is at 33.5 points on Monday and that might go up. He has a usage rate is well over 40 percent during that stretch and going up against the Cavs may be another 50-pointer waiting to happen.
However, even if Booker goes for 50 tonight, the Cavs could easily still win and/or cover this spread. With Ayton, the Suns ranked near or at the bottom in most defensive metrics. Without him tonight they might make the Cavs look like the Harlem Globetrotters.
Dragan Bender and Richaun Holmes are going to be swiss cheese to Booker and the other Sun’s guards and wings. Whoever wants to drive into the paint will have a free pass all night and I can guarantee that the Cavs have no one capable of staying in front of Booker if he wants to get to the bucket.
That being said, the Cavs have some talented guards and Collin Sexton has been playing very well as of late. Sexton, Jordan Clarkson, and Brandon Knight will also have free reign of the painted area.
If both teams are able to penetrate openly, they are either going to get layups or wide open three-pointers from the shooters out on the wing. The Cavs rank inside the top 10 in three-point percentage this season, so they should have issues finding the bottom of the net from deep.
The Sharp Pick
If Love plays, the game should be fast paced and full of scoring, but I’m not convinced he plays either way. Instead the first half total and spread seem like much better values at this point in the day before we know anything about Love’s status.
The Cavs have given up close to 118 points per 100 possessions in the first halves of their road games against the West this season and they also own the worst defensive rating against Western Conference teams this season.
I see that playing into Booker and the Suns’ favor tonight. At least in the first half, I see the Suns covering. Hopefully, Love sits to further the Cavs’ tanking and we get a Phoenix lead at halftime.
First Half Score Prediction: Cavs 54 – Suns 56