Pacers' Home Prowess to Prevent Cavaliers from Clinching on Friday

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Swinging Johnson

Thursday, April 26, 2018 4:31 PM UTC

Thursday, Apr. 26, 2018 4:31 PM UTC

Indiana welcomes Cleveland to its home court Friday, hoping to knot the series at 3 and force a Game 7. Let’s see which team is the best to back in what could be a series-ending game.

NBA Friday: By The NumbersCavaliers (53-34 SU, 33-52-2 ATS) vs. Pacers (50-37 SU, 50-36-1 ATS)Free NBA Pick: Pacers -1½Best Line Offered: BetPhoenix

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What’s Trending
  • Indiana is 22-12 ATS in the second half of the season.
  • Indiana is 7-2 ATS versus Cleveland this season.
  • Indiana is 21-13 ATS revenging a loss vs. an opponent this season.
  • Cleveland is 11-16 ATS when playing against a team with a winning record in the second half of the season.
  • Cleveland is 20-25 ATS when playing against a team with a winning record this season.
  • Cleveland is 1-3 ATS at Indiana this season.

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🏠

It’s quiet now but tomorrow... pic.twitter.com/xjCtQbnVa0

— Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) April 26, 2018
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Game Analysis

The Cavaliers trailed by seven at the half of their Game 5 showdown with the Pacers, and had it not been for a dominating 32-17 third quarter, chances are we would be looking at a potential series clincher for Indiana in front of their home crowd on Friday night. However, that was not to be and despite a game effort by the Pacers in the final frame, in which they outscored the Cavaliers 22-17, the end result was a 98-95 Cleveland victory.

LeBron James continues to make the extraordinary look ordinary when he nailed a Game 5 winning three-pointer at the buzzer to send Quicken Loans Arena into a frenzy. Once again, James put up superstar numbers with 44 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists and was 15-of-15 from the charity stripe. That’s why he’s the king. Kevin Love struggled mightily from the field on 2-of-11 shooting but was perfect from the free-throw line (6-of-6) and ended with 11 points and 10 boards. Veteran point guard Kyle Korver was the only other Cavalier to produce double digits in scoring with 19 on the night.

As we enter this Game 6 matchup we have to be very much aware of Indiana’s success at home. The Pacers are 7-2 against the number and a quick check of the NBA odds board tells us that the betting public is giving that stat plenty of credibility with Indiana favored in this one. Interesting, because the Cavs were actually favored by two points in their last trip to Indiana and bucked their losing trend in the Hoosier State with a 104-102 victory in Game 4. Yet, the Pacers are a hungry and determined team whereas Cleveland can be a more than a bit schizophrenic. Despite the fact that the Cavs now have a 53-34 straight up record, they are only covering the number at a 38-percent clip, and that has caused great concern for those who have been backing Cleveland in their NBA picks.

We are going to go with our gut and advise a play on Indiana. Lay the small number with the Pacers as there are only so many magic tricks left that Lebron can pull. The weak production from his teammates has me concerned, and I suspect Indiana center Victor Oladipo will rebound from his last two less-than-impressive efforts. Back the home chalk here.

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