Weekend Warm-Up: Both Title Favorites Have Tough Road Tests

cavaliers rockets

Thursday, March 9, 2017 8:22 PM GMT

Injuries have taken their toll on the reigning champs from both conferences. Will either Cleveland or Golden State be a sharp basketball pick against very tough competition this weekend?

Nobody’s going to cry a river for the Golden State Warriors or the Cleveland Cavaliers. Especially the Cavaliers – you never know when that river might catch fire. But both teams have had their trouble lately with injuries. It’s hard to beat the NBA odds when you don’t have all your All-Stars available. Maybe one of these other teams will be worth a look instead if you’re betting on basketball this weekend.
 


Sunday: Cleveland at Houston (9 p.m. ET, ESPN)


           

So Andrew Bogut (+5.4 DBPM) signed with the Cavaliers after getting his release from the Philadelphia 76ers, who picked him up in the Nerlens Noel deadline deal with the Dallas Mavericks and then bought out the Aussie center. Bogut played all of 58 seconds for Cleveland before breaking his leg. Sheesh. J.R. Smith (-1.1 BPM) could be back for the Cavs, though. They’ll need all hands on deck against this Houston team. The Rockets may be third bananas in the West behind Golden State and San Antonio, but they’re way better than anything the East has to offer right now.

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Saturday: Golden State at San Antonio (8:30 p.m. ET, ABC)

How important is Kevin Durant (+7.9 BPM) to the Warriors? They dropped the cash in three straight games after Durant suffered a sprained knee and a bone bruise in Washington – courtesy of Wiz center Marcin Gortat throwing Warriors big man Zaza Pachulia into that knee. At least the Warriors have signed veteran glue-guy Matt Barnes (+0.4 DBPM) to provide some sandpaper while Durant is gone. It'll take more than sanding to defeat the Spurs, especially now that head coach Steve Kerr announced this morning that Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and Andre Iguodala will all rest Saturday night.

Once again, maybe the "Under" will be the right call tonight as the market seems to have caught up to San Antonio, too.

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