Game of the Day: Cavaliers at Clippers


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Cleveland Cavaliers at Los Angeles Clippers (+1.5, 208)

Power forward Kevin Love will return after a one-game absence and the Cleveland Cavaliers look for their sixth victory in seven games when they visit the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday. Love sat out Thursday’s victory over the Los Angeles Lakers due to pain in both knees and he’s looking to rebound from an 11-for-42 shooting slump over his last four outings.

Love’s shaky play has contributed to the Cavaliers being unable to perform at the level that forward LeBron James is seeking. Cleveland’s recent surge has been fueled by point guard Kyrie Irving, who is averaging 24.9 points over the last seven games after scoring 26 during Thursday’s 120-108 win over the Lakers. The Clippers have won five of their past seven games as they make a run at catching the third-place Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference playoff race. The contest with the Cavaliers is followed by a five-game road trip that begins in San Antonio and concludes by visiting the Golden State Warriors.

TV: 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC

LINE HISTORY: The spread opened on Saturday afternoon with the Cavaliers pegged as 1.5 point favorites and has held steady. The total hit the board at 207.5 and rose slightly to 208 by Saturday evening.

INJURY REPORT:

Cavaliers – C T. Mozgov (Questionable Sunday, illness)

Clippers – PF L. Mbah a Moute (Questionable Sunday, eye)
                SF P. Pierce (Questionable Sunday, toe)

COVERS POWER RANKINGS: Cavaliers (-8.9) – Clippers (-8.8) + home court (-3) = Clippers -2.9

DANCE TEAM WAR:

ABOUT THE CAVALIERS (46-18): Cleveland is vying to hold off Toronto for the top seed in the Eastern Conference and is 2-0 on a four-game road trip that concludes Monday against Utah. Center Tristan Thompson has posted back-to-back double-doubles during the excursion and is averaging 14 points and 14.5 rebounds in the two contests. Thompson has scored in double digits in a season-best six straight games and is averaging 12.5 points on 28-of-41 shooting during the stretch.

ABOUT THE CLIPPERS (42-22): Small forward Jeff Green has produced back-to-back strong efforts by averaging 20 points on 16-of-24 shooting against Oklahoma City and the New York Knicks. Consistency has been an issue for Green since he was acquired from the Memphis Grizzlies as he scored in double digits in only one of the previous four games, twice going scoreless. “It’s great that I’m on the floor,” Green said after playing 45 minutes against the Knicks on Friday. “I don’t mind it. It’s all about competing. It’s 5-on-5. I’m going to push through and compete.”

 

TRENDS:

* Cavaliers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 vs. NBA Pacific.

* Clippers are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 vs. Eastern Conference.

* Over is 4-0 in Cavaliers last 4 after scoring 100 points or more in their previous game.

* Under is 7-1 in Clippers last 8 home games.

COVERS CONSENSUS: The public seems to agree with our Power Rankings and is favoring the Clippers early on. The over is getting punched at a very agressive 71 percent and we can expect the total to move up, at least, another half point by gametime Sunday afternoon.










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