Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:05 AM
Wednesday's Tip Sheet
Game of the Night: Raptors at Cavaliers – 7:05 PM EST
The top seed in the Eastern Conference currently belongs to Toronto (53-18 SU, 40-31 ATS), who currently holds a five-game edge over Boston after both teams won in comeback fashion last night. The Raptors trailed the Magic by eight points heading into the fourth quarter before Toronto went on a 23-4 run over the next 10:30 to take control and grab a 93-86 victory as 9 ½-point favorites. DeMar DeRozan sat out for the Raptors, but backcourt mate Kyle Lowry dropped in 25 points, including seven three-pointers as Toronto bounced back from Sunday’s home loss to Oklahoma City.
The Cavaliers (41-29 SU, 23-46-1 ATS) have won three of their past four games, including Monday’s 124-117 home triumph over Milwaukee to cash as 2 ½-point favorites. Kevin Love returned to the lineup following a 20-game absence with a left hand injury to score 18 points and seven rebounds. However, the star of the show once again was LeBron James, who burned the Bucks for 40 points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists, while four different Cavaliers knocked down at least three treys.
Cleveland has eliminated Toronto in each of the past two postseasons, including a four-game sweep of the Raptors in last season’s second round. The two squads may see each other again in this season’s playoffs, as they will hook up twice at Quicken Loans Arena in the next two weeks. In the lone matchup this season at Air Canada Center in January, the Raptors destroyed the Cavaliers, 133-99 as 2 ½-point home underdogs, as seven Toronto players finished in double-figures in spite of Lowry sitting out.
The Pelicans and Pacers were supposed to hook up in the Big Easy back in February, but a roof leak at Smoothie King Center prevented the teams from playing. Nearly six weeks later, the teams are back at it with exact records trying to improve their playoff seeding.
New Orleans (41-30 SU, 38-32-1 ATS) is in the midst of three games in three nights at home following Tuesday’s 115-105 triumph over Dallas as 6 ½-point favorites. Guard Jrue Holiday sat out due to an illness, but MVP candidate Anthony Davis carried New Orleans again by scoring 37 points on 15-of-21 shooting to lift the Pelicans to their third win in the last seven games.
Indiana (41-30 SU, 40-31 ATS) snapped a two-game skid in Monday’s 110-110 home victory over the Lakers to cash as 5 ½-point favorites. The Pacers have won four of their last five games away from Bankers Life Fieldhouse, as all four covers came in the underdog role including recent wins at Philadelphia and Boston. Indiana looks to avenge a 117-112 home setback to New Orleans in November, only the second loss to the Pelicans in the last 10 meetings.
The Spurs (41-30 SU, 37-32-2 ATS) may not reach the 50-win mark for the first time in a non-lockout season since 1997 unless it goes 9-2 in the final 11 games. However, San Antonio is streaking at the right time by winning four straight games, including Monday’s 89-75 triumph over short-handed Golden State. The Spurs have cashed in all four of these victories as favorites, while limiting three teams to below 93 points.
The Wizards (40-30 SU, 33-36-1 ATS) travel to Texas for just one game before returning home on Friday to battle Denver. Washington hasn’t taken the court since Saturday’s 109-102 home victory over Indiana to pick up its second straight win since a two-game skid. The Wizards have dropped three straight off consecutive victories, while hitting the OVER in four straight games. These teams have not met this season but will hook up twice over the next week with the second matchup coming at Capital One Arena next Tuesday.
Washington has lost 17 consecutive visits to San Antonio dating back to 2001, while topping the 100-point mark only once in this span. That one time came in last season’s 107-105 defeat as nine-point underdogs, but the Wizards own a dreadful 2-9 ATS record in their last 11 visits to AT&T Center.
Hot at Home
The 76ers (39-30 SU, 37-30-2 ATS) improved to 15-1 in their last 16 games at Wells Fargo Center after knocking off the Hornets on Monday, 108-94 as 8 ½-point favorites. Ben Simmons racked up another triple-double with 11 points, 12 rebounds, and 15 assists, while Joel Embiid posted a 25-point, 19-rebound effort in the victory. Philadelphia snapped a three-game ATS slide, while beating Charlotte for the third time this season.
The Sixers welcome in another underachieving team tonight as the struggling Grizzlies (19-51 SU, 29-39-2 ATS) invade the City of Brotherly Love. Memphis has covered two straight games after cashing as eight-point underdogs in Monday’s 118-115 setback at Brooklyn. However, the Grizzlies have lost 20 of their last 21 games overall and 15 consecutive contests away from FedEx Forum since the calendar year turned to 2018.
Things were looking up for the Clippers (37-33 SU, 37-32-1 ATS), who were riding a 14-5 run from January 26 through March 13. However, the ship may be sinking for Doc Rivers’squad, who has lost four straight games, all to Western Conference playoff teams. The most recent setback came in Tuesday’s 123-109 defeat at Minnesota as 3 ½-point underdogs, the fourth loss this season to the Timberwolves. The Clippers slipped to 2-7 ATS the last nine games, while allowing at least 121 points in three straight contests.
The four-game road trip continues in Milwaukee as the Bucks (37-33 SU, 27-38-5 ATS) try to get back on track following Monday’s loss at Cleveland. The Bucks are currently on a five-game OVER run after giving up at least 112 points in four of the past five contests. Milwaukee owns a horrific 1-9 ATS mark in its previous 10 games at BMO Harris Bradley Center, including an 0-8 ATS stretch as a favorite. The Bucks and Clippers haven’t met this season, but Milwaukee pulled off the season sweep in 2016-17 with both victories coming in the underdog role.
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