Date/Time: 05-05-2018, 20:30 EDT
Spread: Cleveland Cavaliers -4.5
In this Eastern Conference semifinal that turned out to be a LeBron James monologue and display of strength, as he leads the 4th in the East Cleveland Cavaliers (50-32) in a dominating 2-0 lead with back-to-back wins in Toronto. The series moves to Cleveland for game 3 as they host the team that had the best record in the East, the Toronto Raptors (59-23).
In the second game two days ago, the Cavs outscored the Raptors by 20 points in the second half and got away with a 110-128 road win that gives them a 2-0 lead in the series. They now have a chance to sweep the Raptors if they win both home games that are coming up.
Top Basketball BookmakersCleveland had a 50-32 record in the regular season and finished in the 4th place of the Eastern Conference. They are 5-1 in their last 6 games and they are led in scoring by a dominating LeBron James with 34.4 ppg, which is a playoff-high. The All-Star forward also leads the team both in rebounding with 9.9 and in dimes made, with 9 per game. Kevin Love follows with an underwhelming 13.1 ppg and 9.9 boards per game, while JR Smith adds 10.6 ppg.
Raptors had a 59-23 record in the regular season and finished in top of the Eastern Conference. They have two consecutive losses, both at home in this series. DeMar DeRozan leads the team in scoring with 25.8 ppg. He also adds 4.6 dimes per game, while Kyle Lowry follows with 17.8 ppg, 4.5 boards and a team-best 8.5 dimes per game. Jonas Valanciunas adds 14.8 ppg and a team-best 11.1 boards per game.
In their 5 previous meetings this season, Cavs lead the Raptors 4-1 wins and have won both home games. Cleveland have a 32-13 home record, while Toronto are 26-18 on the road. Toronto have a better offense with 109.6 ppg to Cleveland’s 100.6, while Cleveland have a better defense, allowing 102.9 ppg to Toronto’s 110.5. Toronto have better accuracy both from the field, shooting with 47.5% to Cleveland’s 46% and from behind the arc, shooting with 39.7% to Cleveland’s 34%. Raptors also grab more rebounds (41 to 38.9) and dish more assists (23.1 to 18.9), while Cleveland commit less turnovers per game (12.2 to 13.8). Cavs have the momentum and driven by an unearthly LeBron James they seem unstoppable, so pick them for the home victory today.
Toronto Raptors vs Cleveland Cavaliers Game 3 Prediction: Cleveland Cavaliers -4.5 (-109)