In a battle of rebuilding teams featuring 2019 NBA Draft lottery picks, the Cleveland Cavaliers will face off with the Washington Wizards in a nationally-televised game on Friday evening. Both teams will be looking for their third victory of the season with a ton of extra eyes paying attention. Tip-off is at 7 p.m. ET at Capital One Arena. Sportsbooks list Washington as a 4.5-point home favorite, holding steady from the opener, while the over-under, or total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, is 228 in the latest Wizards vs. Cavaliers odds. Before you make any Wizards vs. Cavaliers picks, see the NBA predictions from SportsLine’s advanced computer model.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times, and anyone who followed it last season saw massive returns. The model finished 300-252 on all its top-rated picks. On top-rated against-the-spread and money line NBA picks alone, the model returned a whopping $4,280.
Now it has locked in on Wizards vs. Cavaliers. We can tell you it’s leaning under, and it also says one side of the spread hits in well over 60 percent of simulations. You can only see that pick at SportsLine.
The model knows that the Cavaliers are a young team with some challenges but the early returns under new head coach John Beilein are relatively encouraging. Kevin Love looks like his old self, averaging 18.9 points and 14.4 rebounds per game, and the Cavaliers are receiving bounce-back contributions from Tristan Thompson at 16.9 points and 11.6 rebounds per game. On the perimeter, Cleveland has kinks to work out with its young point guard duo of Collin Sexton and Darius Garland but, at the very least, the Cavs have legitimate creative talent and Jordan Clarkson provides scoring punch in a reserve role for Cleveland.
Just because Cleveland has a few edges, doesn’t mean it will cover the Wizards vs. Cavaliers spread on Friday.
The model also realizes that Washington has the best player on the floor in Bradley Beal, with the 26-year-old guard averaging 27.0 points per game despite shaky efficiency in the early portion of the season. The Wizards are also in a transition mode but, with Beal at the center of it all, Washington currently boasts a top-10 offense in the NBA in terms of overall efficiency. Veterans like Isaiah Thomas and Davis Bertans have provided punch from the outside, while the Wizards are receiving stat-stuffing efforts from youngsters in Thomas Bryant and 2019 lottery pick Rui Hachimura.
Washington isn’t without blemish, however, as the team’s defense currently stands within the bottom five teams in the NBA. Cleveland’s stop unit set a record for all-time futility in 2018-19 but, through early November, it is the Cavaliers that might have the defensive advantage in this game, setting up what should be an intriguing contrast on the floor in the nation’s capital.
So who wins Cavaliers vs. Wizards and which side of the spread hits in well over 60 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the Cavaliers vs. Wizards spread you need to jump on Friday, all from the model that has crushed its NBA picks.