Boston Celtics (55-27) vs Cleveland Cavaliers (50-32)Date : 05/25/2018
Time : 8:30 PM ET
Location : Quicken Loans Arena
Pick, Prediction, & Preview:
Boston Celtics vs Cleveland Cavaliers
The Cavaliers find themselves playing in another elimination game as they will welcome back the Boston Celtics to Quicken Loans to play a crucial game 6. The Celtics will look to close the series out as the Cavs will look to force a game 7 back in Boston.
Boston Celtics's Latest Performance :
The Boston Celtics remain undefeated at home as they are now 10-0 in the playoffs, they become the 7th team in NBA history to be 10-0 at home. The Celtics came out firing from distance in game 5 hitting 6 threes in the first quarter that set the tone for the whole game. Setting the record for the most made three in this series in Game 5. Boston Celtics are a completely different team when playing at TD Garden, all they need to do now to close out this game is duplicate what they did tonight in Quicken Loans it will be easier said than done because the Cavs have only lost 1 game this entire playoff but it is very doable with the amount of talent the Celtics have.
A great adjustment made by coach Brad Steven inserting Baynes into the starting lineup for Marcus Morris so he won’t get into early foul trouble, I expect Brad to use the same line up in the potential closeout game. Baynes also did a very impressive job on the glass limited Thompson to only 1 offensive rebound.
Jayson Tatum arguably played his best game yet for the Celtics as he dropped 24 points grabbed 7 rebounds and 4 steals. It is his 9th 20 point game this playoff and he is now 4th for most points scored by a rookie. In game 5 he looked calm and composed he didn’t force any shot and allowed the game to come to him he was really good in the passing lane as well using his length to deflect the pass allowing him to go coast to coast to the rim.
Although Marcus Smart stats aren’t that appealing he does all the dirty work for this Celtics team he was superb on defense and hit timely 3s he was shooting 50% from deep in game 5, the Celtics are hoping that he can carry over this shooting confidence into game 6.
The Celtics defense has been their calling card all season long, in game 5 they have finally figured out how to beat the Cavs after losing to them twice on the road. For the Celtics to win this series they must not allow the Cavs backcourt to get going Hill and JR combined for only 9 points this what gave them the blowout win. If the Celtics clamp their defense early on the Cavs backcourt it doesn’t matter what does LeBron does because he won’t be able to win with him doing all the scoring, here is why it will work because it will force LeBron to be a scorer and if the Cavs backcourt is having a bad shooting night it will force LeBron to take a bad shot and this will lead to a series win and trip to the finals for the Celtics.
Player to Watch: Jayson Tatum, although the league still labels him as a rookie the way he is playing it feels like he has been here before, I predict that he will have another 20 plus point game and with his level of play will open up the game for his teammates as it will take a collective effort for the Celtics to beat the Cavs on the road.
Cleveland Cavaliers's Latest Performance :
The Cavaliers will have to play yet another elimination game this postseason. I expected the Cavs to come out with some aggression in game 5 after what they saw the Rockets did to Golden State at home. It was the complete opposite they came out disengaged not communicating on defense allowing the Celtics to get looks they wanted, the Cavaliers still haven’t figured out a way to win Boston. LeBron James had 26 points and 10 rebounds but he had more turnovers than assists in this game 5 to 6 respectively. Tonight LeBron did not get any help from his backcourt who played really well at home JR Smith 2 points as he was 0-4 from distance with a shooting performance like that it makes it really hard for the Cavs to win.
The Cavs will be glad to go back to play at Quicken Loans Arena where they have lost one time at home this postseason. They will have to do a better job starting out the game the 5 turnovers they had at the beginning of game 5 really hurt them. Coach Lue must find ways to get his backcourt going early by giving them touches and the confidence when they are shooting the ball. If JR Smith continues not to shoot well he should immediately replace him with Korver because the Cavs can’t afford to go down big since the Celtics are a very well coached team. For the Cavs to force a game 7 back in Boston, the Cavs backcourt must rediscover their shooting stroke this would allow LeBron to play for more freely, LeBron will find you, as a shooter you must be ready to shoot the rock. Expect the Cavs to put everything on the line because a season without a championship is a failed season, that’s how high they hold themselves accountable.
Player to Watch: LeBron James, this game could be LeBron’s last game in Cleveland as I expect him to be laser focus and do everything he can to force a game 7 back in Boston, its win or go home.
How Boston Celtics & Cleveland Cavaliers Matchup.
Vegas Odds, Offshore Odds, & Odds ATS:
Cavaliers are 12-39-2 ATS in their last 53 games following a straight up loss of more than 10 points.
Celtics are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
Against The Spread Selection: Boston Celtics
My reason for the pick :
The Boston Celtics will shock the world and beat the Cavs on the road as the Celtics will become the first team to advance to the NBA Finals. The reasoning why I’m making this bold statement is because of LeBron body language in game 5, fatigue is taking a major toll on LeBron James and he has no help from his teammates. LeBron always plays well with his back against the wall but this time his efforts won’t be enough. The Boston Celtics defense will show up on the road.
Betting trends for Boston Celtics:
- Celtics are 23-8-1 ATS in their last 32 games following a straight up win of more than 10 points.
Betting trends for Cleveland Cavaliers:
- Cavaliers are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of greater than .600.