SATURDAY APRIL 17, 2010 – Chicago Bulls vs Cleveland Cavaliers
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NBA Playoffs odds – Game 1- NBA Eastern Conference Playoffs 1st Round
Chicago: 41-41 SU, 42-38-2 ATS
Cleveland: 61-21 SU, 37-43-2 ATS
The #8 seed Chicago Bulls travel to Cleveland to face the #1 seed Cavaliers for game one of a best-out of seven series in the first round of the NBA Eastern Conference playoffs.
Matchup: Bulls at Cavaliers
Time: Saturday April 17th 3:00 P.M.
Venue: Quicken Loans Arena
Spread: Chicago +11 (-115)
Cleveland -11 (-115)
Total (Over/Under): 192.5
Chicago needed all 82 regular season games to secure a spot in the playoffs as they clinched a berth by beating Charlotte 98-89 in the final game of the regular season to finish with a record of 41-41, one game ahead of Toronto.
Last year in the first round of the playoffs the Bulls took Boston to the limit before losing in seven, in one of the most exciting series in playoff history. Unfortunately, this year’s team is not as good as last years and they are facing a much better opponent. Their only hope in game one is to catch the Cavs trying to shake off the rust from sleep walking through the final two weeks of the regular season.
If Derrick Rose plays out of his mind, Joakim Noah stays in Lebron James’ face all game long, and the rest of the team plays at a high level, they might be able to steal one on the road.
Much has been made about the Cavaliers stealing a page from the Indianapolis Colts guide to “how to approach the postseason” by resting some of their key players, most notably James down the stretch after clinching the #1 spot. After an 82 game schedule, it makes all the sense in the world to try and give your best players a fresh set of legs as they head into the long and grueling chase for a NBA title.
The one thing about James is his ability to turn it on in an instant, so a bit of rest should have no effect on his game. Another plus is getting Shaq back just in time for a championship run. I would not expect much from him in this game, but his mere presence will be a plus for the team.
Game one should also provide a good opportunity to get players like Mo Williams and Antawn Jamison more involved in the offense to take the pressure off of James being a one man show. It may not matter much in this series, but it will definitely pay dividends down the road.
Chicago has a golden opportunity to jump out to a quick start against a team that has basically taken the last four or five games off. While I am not too sure they can actually win in Cleveland, they should be able to keep it close enough to cover the spread.
NBA Gambling Trends:
Cleveland is 10-3 ATS in its last 13 games when playing at home against Chicago
Cleveland is 10-3 SU in its last 13 games when playing at home against Chicago
Chicago is 7-1 ATS in its last 8 games on the road
Chicago is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games on the road
Chicago is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Chicago’s last 5 games when playing Cleveland
Cleveland is 22-3 SU in its last 25 games at home
The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Cleveland’s last 5 games when playing Chicago
Bulls vs. Cavaliers Free NBA Playoff Pick
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