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Game 3: Cavs vs. Celtics NBA Pick | Preview

MONDAY MAY 3, 2010 – Boston Celtics vs Cleveland Cavaliers

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Team records:
Boston: 50-32 SU, 33-48-1 ATS
Cleveland: 61-21 SU, 37-43-2 ATS

Can this be happening? Are the Boston Celtics about to upset the NBA’s applecart and actually deprive LeBron James of a mano-a-mano battle against Kobe Bryant in the NBA Finals?

At times this season the Celtics have resembled Confederate soldiers an hour after the Battle of Gettysburg, with defensive go-to guy Kevin Garnett and offensive fulcrum Paul Pierce nursing various aches and pains.


Time: Friday 7 ET
Venue: Quicken TD Garden, Boston
Spread: Cavaliers -1
Over/Under: 191

Now the Nike is on the other foot, and James’s right elbow is the cause for major concern in Ohio. Boston fans smelled a con job when James tossed up that left-handed free throw in the final Bulls playoff game, but after three MRIs and a so-so performance in Game 2, no one is really sure what’s going on with LBJ.

Boston does as well defending James in big games as any team in the league does, taking advantage of the Cavaliers’ willingness to slow the ball down and attack in a halfcourt set. The Celtics have been exposed when it has to play 94-foot defense against athletic teams.

With the series moving to Boston for Games 3 and 4, Cleveland is now the team that will have to make adjustments as the Cavs desperately try to regain homecourt advantage in a series that most everyone would go 6 games max.

Cleveland’s main problem defensively is Rajon Rondo, who has become if not the best then at minimum the most unique point guard in the NBA. Rondo has never received many props because he can’t shoot well, but he is the best rebounding PG in the league, has the quickest hands in the league and finds passing lanes where none exist.

He has dominated Mo Williams and frankly the Cavs don’t seem to have any idea what to do with him. Mike Brown is not noted as a great strategic coach, but he better make a few calls and get some ideas about controlling Rondo, because Rondo is too talented for Williams.

The Cavs were caught by surprise in Game 2 when Boston reserve big Rasheed Wallace escaped from his crypt long enough to hit some 3-pointers, so if Wallace decides to keep this up, Cleveland has deeper problems than they think they have now.

Cleveland needs one of the next two to restore order to this series. No time like the present to start.

Celtics vs. Cavaliers Game 3 Free NBA Prediction

Game 3s are bad for visiting teams. Home fans have been champing at the bit watching the first two on TV.

Miami, Oklahoma City, Utah, Milwaukee and San Antonio all played well at home in Game 3s in the playoffs this season, and the Celtics have the added incentive of being 1-point dogs at home. But the Celtics actually have been better on the road all year and several times this season have blown double-digit leads at home.

Best play here is the under as the Cavs try to control tempo, and make the Celtics play defense for large portions of the 24-second clock and hope James can take over a tight game in the fourth period.

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Lawrence Paul is a regular contributor to the Cappers Picks Blog, and is a free-lance gambling and travel expert from Massachusetts.


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About Lawrence Paul

Lawrence Paul is back in the saddle as a regular contributor to the Cappers Picks Blog. He's got an AMAZING knack for predicting when a team will have a letdown! Stick with our resident gambling experts sports betting tips all season long!