2015 NBA Playoffs Preview - Round 1 - Boston Celtics vs. Cleveland Cavaliers Betting Odds
The Celtics are the surprise story of the NBA this season and despite gutting their roster and building for the future they were able to win 40 games. Most of that credit belongs to Coach Brad Stevens who is a pure winner. The teams split the season series at 2-2. The Cavs are peaking at the right time and have all the pieces to win an NBA title.
POINT GUARD- Isaiah Thomas vs. Kyrie Irving
Marcus Smart is the starting point guard but that is just for show, as Thomas has become the heart and soul of this team since being traded over at the deadline. Thomas is lighting quick and a good shooter who can carry a team with his energy alone. Irving had some early trouble adjusting to life playing with Lebron James but seems to have figured it out. He had a spectacular season and has seemed to master the three point shot, which is critical when it comes to playing alongside King James.
Shooting Guard- Avery Bradley vs. J.R Smith
Smith has been on his best behavior since arriving in Cleveland and it shows in his game. He is a great catch and shoot player and therefore fits into the system very well. When focused he a force on the defensive end and he has been just that so far. Bradley has had a solid year and is one of the best defenders in the league. He may be assigned to Irving at times.
Small Forward- Evan Turner vs. Lebron James
Turner has not has a consistent year but has shown flashes of what made him a top draft pick a few years ago. He plays with intelligence to make up for what he lacks athletically. James is the best player in the league and one of the best of all time. Where he goes, so does the balance of power. The teams made moves during the season to make sure the best possible team was surrounding him during these last 2-3 years of his prime. As usual the path for any team to win a championship will have to go through him
Power Forward- Brandon Bass vs. Kevin Love
Bass is a good shooter from 15 feet and an all around team player. Love has had a down season by his standards yet he has still put up All Star caliber statistics. He has sat the entire fourth quarter on multiple occasions and its debatable as to what type of relationship he has with Coach David Blatt. Fact is the Cavs will need Love at some point if they are going to win a championship.
CENTER- Tyler Zeller vs. Timofey Mozgov
Zeller is a good young player who can stretch the floor with his shooting. Mozgov was traded for after Anderson Varejao was lost for the season and the Cavs paid a hefty price ( 2 first round picks) but his production and seamless transition makes it look to be a great deal.
The Celtics bench is filled with young/unproven players. The Cavs have a bench loaded with veterans like James Jones, Mike Miller, Iman Shumpert, Tristan Thompson, and Shawn Marion. Any of them are capable of contributing at any time.