NBA Betting – Cleveland Cavaliers at Washington Wizards
Zack GarrisonNo comments
Tonight, the Southeast-leading Washington Wizards will host the underperforming Cleveland Cavaliers at the Verizon Center (8:00 p.m. Eastern).
Coming into the year, everyone expected Cleveland to roll over their Eastern Conference foes. But turning the new “Big 3” into a cohesive unit is proving harder than in Miami. At this point in the year, the Wizards are a more balanced squad at both ends of the court and also have a deeper bench. On offense, the Wizards motor is point guard John Wall. The former #1 overall draft pick is third in the Association in assists, averaging 9.1 per game, and has a nearly 3/1 assist to turnover ratio. Wall is second on the Wizards in points, as well, averaging nearly 19 per game. Bradley Beal leads the squad with 21 per night.
Sitting at 5-5 on the year, Cleveland can largely blame its defense for the early struggles. They are giving up over 103 points per game, which puts them 23rd in the 30 team league. The offense has been better for the Cavs, averaging over 105 per night.
There was a role-reversal on Wednesday night, though, as the defense held the Spurs to just 92 points, but the offense could only muster 90, brining the Cavs back to .500 on the year.
Coach David Blatt will have to keep a close eye on the fatigue level of his new talent, as the “Big 3″ are all averaging big minutes in the early going: LeBron James (39.1 minutes per game), Kyrie Irving (38.4), and Kevin Love (37.0) rank third, fourth and fifth in the NBA in playing time through nine games.
When asked whether he would like to see the bench receive more playing time, James said, “I wouldn’t mind it … I think we have to give our guys on the bench more of an opportunity. I looked at a stat and myself, Kyrie and Kevin are three of the top five guys in the league in minutes per game, and that has to come down.”
With the Cavs still struggling to find their form, take the Wizards and the points.