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NBA Free Pick 1/23/2018

Are Oddsmakers Setting a Trap When the Cavs Visit the Spurs?

The line for the 1/23 NBA free pick is CLE -2 at San Antonio which seems off for a number of reasons. First of all, the last time we saw Cleveland they were playing All-Star level defense – which in the NBA is not a good thing. The Cavs lost 124-148 to Oklahoma City on Saturday afternoon as the Thunder shot nearly 60% from the field. There’s internal turmoil surrounding the Cavaliers too as they went to the go-to player’s only meeting because they thought Kevin Love was faking an illness when he left the OKC game early.

The Spurs actually opened as -2 favorites in this contest but 70% of the public is backing the dysfunctional Cavs. There’s no real reason for the Cleveland love either. Kawhi Leonard is out for San Antonio – but he has been for a majority of the year. Rudy Gay, Manu Ginobili, and Pau Gasol will also miss tonight’s contest, but the Spurs have depth. In the case of Gasol, the Spurs defense might actually improve with his absence. It takes guts, but is Cleveland a contrarian play for Tuesday night?

Cavs Burn Out in the Spotlight

Obviously being a Lebron James – led team the Cavs are going to be on national TV a lot. You’d think they’d be used to it, but Cleveland has dropped five straight in the national spotlight with a combined losing margin of 89 points. The Cavs are a meager 11-12 on the road this year and have dropped 8 of 9 away from Cleveland. The Cavs only road win over that span was a 131-127 win versus last place Orlando as -9 favorites. Meanwhile the Spurs are 19-3 on their own court this year.

San Antonio is missing a lot of offensive firepower and they have failed to break 100 points in four of the last six games. It’s important not to underestimate just how bad the Cleveland defense is though. The Cavs rank near the bottom in every major defensive category including points allowed (26th), field goal shooting (28th), 3-point shooting against (23th), and defensive rebounding (23rd). Will the impassioned player’s only meeting fire up the Cavs on that end – or will it just increase the dissent making the 1/23 NBA free pick another blowout?

Wanna be one of the first to Congratulate you on this accomplishment/achievement tonight that you’ll reach! Only a handful has reach/seen it too and while I know it’s never been a goal of yours from the beginning try(please try) to take a moment for yourself on how you’ve done it! The House you’re about to be apart of has only 6 seats in it(as of now) but 1 more will be added and you should be very proud and honored to be invited inside. There’s so many people to thank who has help this even become possible(so thank them all) and when u finally get your moment(alone) to yourself smile, look up to the higher skies and say THANK YOU! So with that said, Congrats again Young King 🤴🏾! 1 Love! #striveforgreatness🚀 #thekidfromakron👑

A post shared by LeBron James (@kingjames) on Jan 23, 2018 at 7:29am PST

San Antonio a Better Offense at Home?

1/23 NBA free pick
Aldridge is going to need a huge night for the Spurs to get the home win.

James needs 7 points tonight to eclipse the 30,000 barrier and don’t worry – he’s already congratulated himself for the feat. Could this serve as bulletin board material for Spurs coach Gregg Poppovich – or does Pop really even care? The Spurs likely aren’t going to limit James to under 7 points, but at the very least they could blow the Cavs out on Lebron’s self-proclaimed special night.

The real question though is if the Spurs have the health to accomplish this. San Antonio is very depleted and Gasol’s absence is definitely going to be felt on the front lines. LaMarcus Aldridge has a favorable matchup in the 1/23 NBA free pick against either Kevin Love of 6’6″ Jae Crowder but nobody else in the Spurs lineup tonight averages more than 10 points a game.

1/23 NBA Free Pick – Betting

This line movement is very fishy and you really have to factor in all the Spurs injuries when handicapping the 1/23 NBA free pick. The numbers don’t really stack up well for Cleveland:

  • Cavs are 1-10 ATS their last 11 road games
  • Cavs are 0-6 ATS their last 6 road games vs a home winning % above .600
  • Cavs are 0-4 ATS their last four on 2 days rest
  • Cavs are 5-11 ATS the last 16 vs San Antonio

Cleveland has a lot more talent available to them tonight – but they’ve also been one of the worst teams in the league since Christmas even with those superstars. That being said the Spurs are simply outmanned tonight. The 17th team meeting of the year is the one that fires up the Cavs as they get the road W cover tonight.

Pick: Cleveland Cavaliers -2

 

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Carl Taylor

Every loss is a chance to learn a lesson. That being said, wins are so much more enjoyable. Follow along to tap into the wisdom I've learned from 20 years as a sports bettor.

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