The new look Toronto Raptors host the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday evening at Scotiabank Arena as both teams look to start off the new year with a bang.
The Cavaliers (18-14) stand sixth in the Eastern Conference, while Toronto (12-20) is just barely staying out of the cellar in 12th place.
Bet on Cavaliers vs. Raptors
Toronto is hoping that RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley, acquired from the New York Knicks on Saturday, can provide a much-needed spark to the lineup and help the team contend for a playoff spot down the stretch.
Here’s a look at the odds for the contest via bet365.
Cavaliers vs. Raptors odds
|Cavaliers Moneyline Odds
|Raptors Moneyline Odds
|226.5 points (over -110, under -110)
|Raptors -2.5 (-110)
|Jan. 1, 7:30 p.m. ET
Stream: NBA League Pass
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About the Cavaliers (18-14 SU, 15-15-2 ATS, 16-16 o/u)
Cleveland has split its last 10 games and will arrive in Toronto well-rested, having last played on Friday, a 119-111 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks. In that game, the Cavaliers got 34 points from Donovan Mitchell and 30 points from Jarrett Allen but it wasn’t enough to offset the losses of Darius Garland and Evan Mobley, both of whom were not available due to injury.
The Cavs will unfortunately be without the services of these two young stars for a while. Mobley underwent arthroscopic surgery in mid-December and is expected to miss six-to-eight weeks. Right around the same time, Garland fractured his jaw and will miss several weeks according to reports. It’s a pretty big loss for a Cleveland team that was already struggling this year and will now face a pivotal portion of its schedule undermanned.
In Mobley, they lose their defensive anchor and with Garland they miss out on having their premier playmaker and a great supplement to Mitchell’s scoring prowess. Mitchell, however, has been putting up numbers this season, averaging 28 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 5.7 assists per game. All while his future in Cleveland is widely speculated as trade rumours swirl.
Prior to Friday’s contest against Milwaukee, Mitchell had also missed four straight games due to illness. The Cavs still won three of those four matchups and come into Toronto winning five of their last seven games, all since Garland went down. As the Cavs hope to maintain their place in the standings with all these injuries, they’ll look to depend more on Caris LeVert (15.3), Allen (14.3), and Max Strus (14.0), the only other active players besides Mitchell averaging double figures in scoring.
About the Raptors (12-20 SU, 14-17-1 ATS, 17-15 o/u)
The Raptors, after months and really years of speculation, have finally made the oft-rumoured O.G. Anunoby trade. Toronto will miss one of the premier 3-and-D wings in the league and it also gave up two fourth-year players in power forward Precious Achiuwa and point guard Malachi Flynn in the deal. The Raptors are receiving two big pieces in return however, in Toronto-native Barrett, the third pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, and sixth man extraordinaire, Quickley. Barrett is the bigger name here as the Maple Mamba was born in Toronto and is returning home, but Raps fans may be more excited about the addition of Quickley.
IQ is coming off a breakout season where he finished second in the Sixth Man of the Year race and has upped his numbers this season to 15 points per game and 39.5% shooting from deep. He’ll bring explosive scoring ability and premium shooting to a Toronto team that can use both. Barrett, even though the team that drafted him so high appears to have given up on him, is no slouch himself. While not the most efficient player, Barrett still has tremendous upside and has averaged 18.1 points and 5.3 rebounds per game for his career. The six-foot-six guard brings plenty to like to the table and still has the potential to make a leap to stardom playing at home.
While nothing has been announced as of yet officially, there are expectations that both players will make their debut with the Raptors at home Monday night. Barrett is likely to start and it will be interesting to see where Quickley fits in. Many expect him to vie for the sixth man role with Gary Trent Jr., but don’t be surprised to see him start next to Scottie Barnes and Barrett. Quickley is an unselfish player who can shoot it from long range really well and can flourish running around in Toronto’s offence with his firepower.
The Raptors can definitely use the help after finding themselves undermanned Saturday night after making the trade. They fell to the historically bad Detroit Pistons, 129-127, Detroit’s first victory in 29 games! That comes just the day after losing to the league-leading Boston Celtics by just two, 120-118. Since Dec. 15, the Raptors have only won two of eight games so the hope is this trade can renew their prospects for playoff contention in this new year.
Scottie Barnes over 21.5 points
- Mobley (left knee surgery) is out.
- Garland (fractured jaw) is out.
- Ricky Rubio (personal) is out.
- Garrett Temple (right ankle) is a game-time decision.
- Christian Koloko (illness) is a game-time decision.
- Cleveland is 7-4-2 ATS after a loss this season.
- The Cavs are 3-4 ATS after two or three days of rest.
- Toronto has hit the over in 55.7% of its games on one day’s rest.
- The Raptors are 1-4 ATS this season with a rest disadvantage.
Player prop trends
- Mitchell is averaging 29.2 points, 6.7 assists, and 4.8 rebounds per game in the Cavs’ last 10 games but scored only 10 points in 34 minutes in the previous meeting between these teams this year, a Cavs 105-102 victory in late November.
- Barnes is averaging 23.8 points, 9.9 rebounds, and 6.2 assists per game in the month of December, numbers all slightly higher than his season average.
- Allen is averaging 16.5 points and 10.9 rebounds per game in his last 10 games.
- Pascal Siakam averaged 24.8 points per game in the month of December, nearly three points per game more than his season average.
Wagers to consider
- SGP – Under 224.5 (-110) and Mitchell to have more than 6.5 assists: +282. The Cavs are already missing key players, and it might take some time for this new Raptors rotation to gel when adding two brand new players, so don’t expect the offensive fireworks to start in this first game.
- Barnes Over 21.5 points (-110). Expect Barnes to take on more of the offensive load in this game and hit his over on points with Cleveland missing some key defenders and the Raptors bringing new people into their scheme.