Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Los Angeles Clippers Odds, Picks and Preview -- 10/27/2021

by Chuck Sommers

Time: 10:30 p.m. ET
Venue: Staples Center, Los Angeles, CA
Where to watch: Bally Sports Southern California, Bally Sports Ohio

Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks


DraftKings: Clippers -7.5; O/U 217
Westgate: Clippers -8; O/U 217 
Caesars: NL

Season record
Cavaliers: 2-2
Clippers: 1-2

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Cavaliers - Clippers preview and analysis


Recent form
Cavs: won 99-87 at Nuggets on Monday
Clippers: won 116-86 vs. Trail Blazers on Monday

Did … did the Cleveland Cavaliers really beat the Denver Nuggets? In Denver? With a fully-healthy roster?

Man, the beginning of any sports regular season is so weird. This wonderful league included.

How much we should actually put into this stock of the Cavaliers being good is still a ways away, but there’s no denying this youthful bunch has some hope moving forward, but they’ll have another strong test in front of them Wednesday against the Los Angeles Clippers on the road.

The Cavs outscored the Nuggest 49-41 in the second half to pull off one of the bigger wins in that franchise’s history since LeBron James was in town. Kevin Love turned back the clock to score 22 points off the bench, and Jarett Allen added a double-double of 21 points and 16 rebounds to anchor an important victory for that group.

"Everybody was showing their commitment to one another," Cavaliers coach J.B. Bickerstaff said. "We didn't back down at all."

Cleveland’s gameplan was let Nikola Jokic do everything and let everyone else beat them. The reigning MVP did have 24 points and an absurd 19 rebounds, but had only three assists because the rest of teammates couldn’t put the ball through the hoop.

Michael Porter Jr. and Aaron Gordon combined to shoot 9 of 28 for only 23 points.

Bickerstaff said it’s going to take a bit before he finds a steady rotation. Last game, the Cavs had Lauri Markkanen at 6-foor-10 to play small forward with Evan Mobley and Allen. It’s a big lineup with a skilled backcourt of Darius Garland and Collin Sexton.

But their hands will be full when they face the Clippers and their big backcourt of Reggie Jackson and Eric Bledsoe. It’s also imperative that Bickerstaff doesn’t play Markkanen at the three unless he wants Paul George to eat him alive.

George is coming off a career-high eight steals to go with 16 points in the Clippers’ 30-point win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday. Reserve guard Luke Kennard had a team-high 23 points after hardly seeing any time last season. It’s October and things are new and such.

"If I make two or three in a row, I'm really looking to be aggressive the next shot or two," Kennard said. "Guys were looking for me, especially in the transition. That's where I try to sneak around the defense."

The troubles of making things happen without Kawhi Leonard is going to make this a rough season. The Clippers need their depth if they want to make another run at the Western Conference Finals, and losses to the Golden State Warriors (in the season opener) and Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday will not help matters in the short run.

Prediction


The Clippers should run away with this game and get back to .500 especially with a big game from George. Markkanen, if he is playing as a big small forward, will not last long and Bickerstaff will need to find someone capable of slowing him down. Easier said than done. Matchup wise, this is going to be a rough patch in the schedule for the Cavs and L.A. will get the job done. Clippers by 12

Betting trends


The Cavaliers are 22-43 ATS the past three seasons after an under the previous game.

The Cavaliers are 7-17 ATS after a game where both teams scored 105 points or less.

The Clippers are 99-45 straight up as a favorite the past three seasons.

Projected starting lineup


Cavaliers:
PG: Darius Garland
SG: Collin Sexton
SF:
Lauri Markkanen
PF:
Evan Mobley
C:
Jarrett Allen

Clippers:
PG: Reggie Jackson
SG: Eric Bledsoe
SF:
Paul George
PF:
Marcus Morris Sr.
C:
Ivica Zubac

Key Injuries


Cavs: None

Clippers: SF Kawhi Leonard (knee, out), C Serge Ibaka (back, out)

Statistical leaders


Cavs:
Points: Collin Sexton -- 19.5
Rebounds: Jarrett Allen -- 9.5
Assists: Ricky Rubio -- 9.0
Blocks: Evan Mobley -- 2.0
Steals: Lauri Markkanen -- 1.5

Clippers:
Points: Paul George -- 28.7
Rebounds: Paul George -- 7.0
Assists: Eric Bledsoe -- 5.3
Blocks: Eric Bledsoe -- 1.0
Steals: Paul George -- 4.0 

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Chuck Sommers

About the Author:

Chuck Sommers has camped outside of sportsbooks since he can remember, learning the tricks and nuances of the trade. He still has nightmares of betting $5,000 on the Raiders in the Tuck Rule game but has since turned that to 25 years of veteran handicapping greatness. You can find him mostly in the shadows at the Red Rock or Aliante casinos wondering if the over is cashing on any given Sunday.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

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