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August 8, 2022

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Vegas Play of the Day: Cavs at Clippers

LeBron James

Mark Duncan / AP

The Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James walks the ball up against the Atlanta Hawks in an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014, in Cleveland.

Here’s the latest installment of the Play of the Day, which uses odds from the South Point. Our three sports writers started with a $10,000 bankroll — fictional, of course.

Cleveland Cavs plus-8.5 at Los Angeles Clippers: $550 to win $500 : LeBron James’ return to Cleveland hasn’t gone as planned. The Cavs have just a 20-20 record, Kevin Love has struggled in being their second-scoring option, and rumors are swirling about the team’s future.

Is coach David Blatt overwhelmed coaching in the NBA after years overseas? Does LeBron regret opting out of his contract in Miami? Will Cleveland even make the playoffs?

Remember, the NBA season is a marathon. Cleveland players need time to figure out how each other plays. They took a small step forward last night in a 109-102 victory against the Lakers. I’m betting that trend will continue tonight against the Clippers.

James, who has missed time this month with injury, scored 36 points despite a slow start. It was one of Cleveland’s best performances of the year — they shared the ball, had just nine turnovers and won the rebounding battle. They outscored the Lakers 22-14 in the third quarter, possibly turning the corner.

The Clippers (26-13) are one of the NBA’s best teams. At the beginning of the season, some thought this could be a NBA Finals preview. Maybe it still will be. The Cavs’ are only halfway through their marathon.

Standings: Bern (62-52-1, $11,926), Keefer (61-61-2, $10,197), Brewer (56-61-3, $5,785)

Ray Brewer can be reached at 702-990-2662 or [email protected]. Follow Ray on Twitter at twitter.com/raybrewer21

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