Here's our valuable NBA pick for the playoff series between the Chicago Bulls and Cleveland Cavaliers that will begin on Monday. Join us in reading this fact filled article.
NBA Eastern Conference Semifinal Series
The Bulls and Cavaliers will square off in a highly anticipated playoff series which is set to begin on Monday at Cleveland. According to the NBA odds, Cleveland is -215 on the money line, and Chicago comes in as a +180 underdog underdog to win the series. These Central Division rivals met four times during the regular season, and Cleveland went 3-1 in those encounters.
Unexpected Key Personnel Losses for Cavaliers
Cleveland sustained a huge blow during Game 4 of their opening round series clinching win over the Boston Celtics. Kevin Love dislocated his shoulder and it required season ending surgery. Love averaged 16.0 points and 9.7 rebounds per game in his first season with Cleveland. During that same game, guard J.R. Smith was involved in an incident that prompted the NBA to levy a two game suspension. Smith is averaging 12.1 points per game this season.
The Chicago Bulls have gone a very respectable 25-19 on the road during the 2014-2015 NBA campaign. The Bulls are 27-17 (61.4%) under the total in their forty-four away games. The Bulss have gone a solid 29-15 at the United Center in Chicago.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are 33-10 at home this year. They’ve gone 26-17 (59.1%) under the total during those forty-three game at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. Similar to Chicago, the Cavaliers are a solid 24-19 on the road.
The Chicago Bulls have been extremely good defensively during the final stretch of the regular season and into the playoffs. They’ve allowed 95-points or less in twelve of their previous fifteen games, and have held seven of their last ten opponents to less than 40% shooting from the field.
The Cleveland Cavaliers defensive play is a bit overshadowed by their dynamic offensive talent. In their four game opening round sweep of Boston, they held the Celtics to 94.7 points per contest, and just 42.0% shooting from the field. The Cavaliers held nine of their last twelve opponents to 99-points or less. One area of concern that they’ll have in this series will be defending the three point line. In their four regular season matchups versus Chicago, they allowed the Bulls to convert on a blistering 42.3% of their three-point attempts.
This has all the ear marks of a long, exciting, and very closely contested playoff series. However, I like the overall quality depth the Bulls possess, and also give them an edge on the defensive end of the floor. Losing players like Kevin Love for the remainder of the playoffs, and J.R. Smith in the first two games of the series due to suspension certainly isn’t going to help the Cavaliers cause. I’m going to have a slight lean on the series underdog for one of my NBA picks.
NBA Picks: Play Chicago +185 on the money line over Cleveland to win the series at Bookmaker