Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers - 4/15/18 NBA Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Florence Fletcher
April 16, 2018

James wasn't fair to the Pacers in last year's playoffs. This year has been a wild ride, but none of it really mattered until now. The Cavs went 39-0 in games they led heading into the fourth quarter this season, the only undefeated team in those situations this season and the first to do it since 1954-55. IN shot.462 from 3-point range against Cleveland (54-of-117). The Pacers won all three overtime games they played this year.

Following the win, Oladipo said he wasn't bothered by Gilbert's comment, but did admit that it "added fuel to the fire".

But this is about the Cavs. Listen, it's going to be a very good matchup.

The Pacers took the fight to the Cavs, and Indiana's players are battling critics who say they can't compete with Cleveland. "This is a totally new team and we are a new team". LeBron James has been down this road many times before and has three rings to show for it. They were more physical, more energetic and more composed. The Pacers ranked 17th in points per game this season. Not many things in life are certain but LeBron vs the Pacers postseason has quickly become a near-yearly tradition.

There's still a long way to go in this series, obviously. Larry Nance Jr has also provided some much-needed competition for Tristan Thompson. He was only on five of the rest of the lineups.

Offensively, Cleveland has the ability to blow out anybody.

Sabonis started three games against Cleveland this season and registered double-doubles in each of them. The Cavs are lethal when clicking on offense. Turns out, their acquiring off All-Star Victor Oladipo turned their franchise around and pushed them to the 5th seed in the West. The Pacers had a slightly above average team, finishing 11th in ORtg and 13th in DRtg. "Trying to take away what a team does best and try to make them do something different that they're not used to doing".

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There are still some lingering injuries on Cleveland's roster, but it shouldn't be too big of a deal. Even without star center Joel Embiid (bone fracture, left eye) the Sixers finished the regular season on a 16-game winning streak.

Lue plans to run with a 10-man rotation. "We're going to have to bring those other guys along, but there's nothing better than just throwing yourself into it".

In any case, Jeff Green will get heavy minutes in the playoffs and he'll be a major key.

"We were just sloppy with the ball".

Better protect those chins, Pacers. Since 2012, James has not lost a single game in the first round.

At some point in the future, the Cavs are going to reach for the metaphorical switch and there will be no electricity. "If we could bottle that third quarter up and part of the fourth, the way we played, with intensity, diving on the floor, we'll be good". However, that's probably not happening yet. The Pacers tore apart the Cavs' defense, as well. They all understand it. "They still don't believe". Green is much quicker than nearly any "power forward" the Cavs will go up against, and dictating size is a pretty powerful strategy for the Cavs.

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