Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#501 Cleveland Cavaliers vs.
#502 Detroit Pistons
Monday, April 19, 2021 at 7:05pm EDT
Little Caesars Arena, Detroit
Written by David Delano

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The Detroit Pistons will host the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday night in a meeting between the two teams at the bottom of the Eastern Conference Central Division. The Cavaliers have won both head-to-head matchups this season, winning 128-119 in overtime in Detroit on December 26 as a one-point dog and 122-107 at home on January 27 as a two-point favorite.

Cavaliers look for fifth straight head-to-head win against Detroit

The Cleveland Cavaliers are 20-36 overall and 9-20 on the road straight-up. The Cavaliers are 3-6 in the division, with two of those wins coming against Detroit. Cleveland is 13th in the Eastern Conference, currently eight games out of a playoff spot. Cleveland is in contention for a high-level lottery pick, currently holding the sixth-worst record in the NBA.

Cleveland has lost four of its last five games and two in a row after falling to the Chicago Bulls 106-96 as a three-point road dog on Saturday night. The young backcourt combo of 6'1 guards, 22-year-old Collin Sexton and 21-year-old Darius Garland, combined to score 21 points each in the loss. Veteran power forward Kevin Love added 14 points and 11 rebounds but struggled shooting just 2 of 10 from three-point range.

Sexton has played in 47 of the teams 56 games on the season and averages a team-best 24.2 ppg. Darius Garland is second on the team in scoring, averaging 17.1 points, 6.1 assists,s and 1.2 steals per contest. Jarrett Allen, a 6'11 center, has averaged 13.8 points and 9.8 rebounds in 35 games in a Cavs uniform this season after putting up 11.2 ppg and 10.4 rebounds in 12 games as a Brooklyn Net. Kevin Love, a 32-year-old five-time NBA All-Star, has battled with injuries this season and is averaging 11.2 points and 6.3 rebounds in only 13 games, but has played in all nine of Cleveland's games during April.

The Cavaliers are the NBA's lowest-scoring team averaging 103.8 ppg, and second-to-last shooting 34% from three-point range. On defense, the Cavs are 28th, allowing opponents to shoot 48% from the field, and 11th allowing 111.1 ppg.

Isaiah Stewart emerging as bright spot in Detroit's future

The Detroit Pistons have the worst record in the Eastern Conference and third-worst record in the NBA overall at 17-40. The Pistons are just 10-16 at home and 0-9 against the Central Divison, consisting of Milwaukee, Indiana, Chicago, and Cleveland. Detroit has lost four of its last five games, with the most recent win coming 110-104 at home against the Oklahoma City Thunder as a 2.5 point home favorite on Friday. The win came even though Detroit was playing without Jerami Grant, the teams' leading scorer. The Pistons then lost to Washington on the road the very next day, 121-100 as a 4.5-point road dog with Grant in the lineup.

Isaiah Stewart, a 6'8 rookie from Washington, is averaging 7.1 points and 6.3 rebounds per game on the season and coming on very strong recently. Stewart scored 15 points and grabbed 21 rebounds in Friday's win over Oklahoma City and scored 19 points with 12 rebounds the next day in the loss against Washington.

Jerami Grant has started all 50 games he has played for the Pistons this season and leads the team with 22.4 ppg. Grant has averaged 27 points and shot 60% from the three-point range in the Pistons' two losses to Cleveland this season. Grant will not play on Monday due to a quadricep injury. Second among active Pistons in scoring is Josh Jackson, who has played in 52 games and averaged 13.4 ppg.

As a team, Detroit is 25th in the NBA, shooting 44.9% from the floor and averaging 107.6 ppg. The Pistons defense has allowed 111.4 ppg, which is 15th best in the league and 26th, holding opponents to 47.8% shooting from the field.

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Both teams have struggled this season, but the Cavaliers have recently had the Pistons number, covering and winning straight-up in the last four consecutive head-to-meetings. Although both teams have made several moves during the season that have changed the outlook of their rosters, the Cavaliers, as currently constructed, are still the team overall. Over the last seven games, Cleveland is 12th in the NBA in offensive efficiency and 14th in defensive efficiency. The Pistons are 25th offensively and 24th defensively over the same stretch.

The Pistons will also be extremely short-handed in this game. Eight Pistons are currently listed as questionable or out for this game. Leading scorer Jerami Grant is one of the players who will not suit up tonight, along with veteran Mason Plumlee who has averaged 10.2 points and nine rebounds per game.  Take the Cavaliers to cover.

Prediction: Cleveland Cavaliers -2

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Going all the way back into 2018, the last nine head-to-head meetings between the Pistons and Cavaliers have gone over the total. There have also been at least 213 combined points scored in the last 12 match-ups in this rivalry. Take the over for Monday.

Prediction: Over 212.5
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Written By David Marotta , "David Delano"

David Delano is a Bowling Green State University graduate with a passion for sports, traveling, and music. David loves to handicap MLB, NFL, NCAAF, NCAAB, NBA, WNBA, and is also a big fan of boxing and track and field. Over the years, David has worn several hats in the sports world, from being behind the camera to writing, filming, editing, scouting, and coaching, along with servicing his clients as a sports handicapper.  We are glad to have David on our team, so be sure and follow along.