The Cavaliers made a loud and bold statement last night. The road to the NBA Finals may not usually travel through Cleveland, but it does travel through LeBron James, and it just might again this year as well. The Cavaliers notched their 18th win in 20 games and did so in impressive fashion, controlling most of the game against the NBA’s top team, Golden State.
Other than Atlanta, is there anyone in the East you can really see giving the Cavaliers more than asix game series? Toronto has played well, but I can’t see them knocking off the Cavs in a seven game series. Washington is an absolute mess right now, and we all know about the problems Chicago faces. As much as everyone wanted to fire Coach Blatt and proclaim the Cavs as a “one and done” playoff team when they had some early struggles, it looks like Coach Denny Green might be the one smiling in the end, because when it’s all said and done Lebron and the Cavs might just be who we thought they were.
One last note – the Tunder may have lost in overtime at Phoenix last night, but the Russell Westbrook for MVP chants should get even louder after last night’s 39/14/11 triple double. The dude is simply the most dominant player in the world right now, relentlessly attacking and imposing his will on the game.
We’ve now run off eight of nine NBA winners, so let’s keep it going tonight.
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Today’s Free Pick:
Miami Heat at New Orleans Pelicans +1
The Pels were supposed to flounder and fade into the distance without Anthony Davis on the court. But that hasn’t been the case, as they have won all three without AD, and the steadying influence of former Heat point guard Norris Cole has gotten a lot of credit. He is a young player, but he FEELS like a savvy veteran after three NBA Finals runs and all the big minutes hes played in big games. He has scored double figures in his last two games and gets another chance to show out against his former mates tonight.
New Orleans went into Miami and won last week, but that was a bit of a strange game given the recent injuries/health concerns to both Anthony Davis and Chris Bosh, plus the flurry of trades. This game should be a little more settled down as both teams have had a week to adjust and adapt. However, I don’t think the end result will be different…
NOLA is 19-10 at home this season and has been an efficient team on their home floor. Miami looks good from a distance, having won three of their last four, but the wins are over New York, Philly and Orlando in overtime, so perhaps the enthusiasm should be slightly tempered. It’s one thing to eek out wins over the dregs of the Lottery, it’s quite another to go on the road and beat a team with playoff aspirations.