Cleveland Cavaliers at Denver Nuggets – Pepsi Centre at 02:00
LeBron and the Cavs travel to Denver on Tuesday night in the middle of a busy road spell to face the Nuggets in a late 2am tip off UK time.
The Cavaliers are fully worthy of their 20-9 overall record and have all but locked in their playoff slot, but there continues to be a huge differential in their effectiveness on the road as opposed to at home.
Cleveland are a nigh on fortress at the Q, only losing a single game. However on the road, the Cavs only made it back to a .500 record with a scrappy 4 point road against a hugely disappointing 2015/16 season Phoenix Suns last night. LeBron was notable in his tardiness. James struggled to find any sort of rhythm and finished the night with a way below par 14 points.
Now the Cavs have a very short rest to contend with, however they can be thankfully that the trip from Phoenix to Denver is relatively short by US terms. However considering they are now on a 5-day stretch including 2 back to back games, they are going to have to do it the hard way in Colorado. Timofey Mozgov will be looking to impress after being traded to the Cavs from the Nuggets in January. They may be relying on him if Lebron fails to produce and Kyle Irving sits out as expected.
The Nuggets have had a season to forget. Tormented by injury after injury and unable to piece together any sort of momentum, they have been largely unable to make their home court advantage pay in 2015/16. However with a well travelled Cavs side coming into town, there has to be a decent chance of catching them on a flat day, much like the Bucks did when knocking off the Warriors earlier in the season.
On a positive note for the Nuggets, they have won 10 of the last 14 meetings between these sides at the Pepsi Centre, and the altitude will try it’s best to provide assistance to tiring out the already weary Cavs side.
Based on trends so far this season it would be no surprise to see the Nuggets jump out to an early lead, and remain competitive heading into the 4th quarter. This is generally where they have lost their way in 2015/16 and expect the Cavs to get up late on. But only just. With the spread of 6.5 to the Nuggets, this looks fair enough with home advantage, and will take them to cling on to Cleveland coat tails.
Handicap Betting Recommendation: Denver Nuggets +6.5 at 1.85
Prices correct at time of writing.
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