Cavaliers vs. Hawks: Offense Will Rule in Atlanta

Action Network contributor Jacob McKenna previews how to bet Cavaliers vs. Hawks, including updated odds, picks & predictions for Monday's game.

Cavaliers vs. Hawks Odds

Cavaliers Odds -1.5
Hawks Odds +1.5
Over/Under 234
Time 7:30 p.m. ET
TV NBA League Pass
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

The Cleveland Cavaliers make a short, one-game road trip on Tuesday to take on the Atlanta Hawks in an Eastern Conference battle.

Cleveland has been playing excellent basketball as of late, entering this matchup on a four-game win streak. The Cavaliers now own the fourth-best record in the Eastern Conference at 48-28 and have officially clinched a playoff spot.

Meanwhile, the Atlanta Hawks are still very much in the thick of the Eastern Conference playoff race. At the time of writing, Atlanta is the No. 8 seed in the East and has a half-game lead over the Bulls in 10th.

Even with the Cavaliers clinching a playoff spot, there are still plenty of playoff implications on the line in this one. Stick around to see the odds and prediction for the matchup between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Atlanta Hawks.

>> Download The Action Network App to get real-time NBA odds, track your bets and follow all of our experts’ picks.

Cleveland Cavaliers

The Cleveland Cavaliers picked up their 48th win of the season on Sunday after a 108-91 win over the Houston Rockets, already surpassing last season’s win total of 44.

The largest key to Cleveland’s success this year has been its stellar play on the defensive end of the floor. has the Cavaliers listed with a 109.6 Defensive Rating  through 76 games, the best rating in the NBA.

The stellar play on the defensive end has continued during Cleveland’s four-game win streak. The Cavaliers have seen their Defensive Rating improve to 107.7 across the last four games, a result of holding opponents to shooting 45.6% from the floor overall and only 30.4% from behind the arc.

Cleveland has complimented that defense with an Offensive Rating of 120.0, leading to a Net Rating of 12.3 and a point differential of +48 in the last four games.

Everything is falling into place for this team down the stretch, but if there is one thing standing in Cleveland’s way, it is the injury report. The Cavaliers will be dealing with a few injuries for this matchup, most notably to Jarrett Allen, who is a game-time decision with a groin injury.

Atlanta Hawks

The Atlanta Hawks have been all over the place this season, leading to a mediocre record of 37-38. Atlanta just can’t seem to put things together on both ends of the court at the same time, and that has been the theme for the Hawks the entire month of March.

Since March 1st, the Hawks have been one of the more potent offensive attacks in the NBA, as evidenced by Atlanta ranking third in Offensive Rating (120.5). That rating has been achieved by shooting 49.7% from the floor and 36.0% from three, both of which are improvements form Atlanta’s season averages.

As a result of the increased efficiency we have seen, the Hawks scored 118 or more points in 10 of 13 games this month. That high-scoring output can also be attributed to Atlanta’s quicker pace of play as Atlanta has generated an average of 102.27 offensive possessions per game this month.

However, the Hawks can’t seem to figure things out on the defensive end of the floor. Atlanta’s Defensive Rating in March comes in at 119.2, a result of opponents shooting 51.5% overall and a tremendous 39.3% from behind the arc per

That poor defense is the main reason why Atlanta is just 6-7 this month and in jeopardy of missing the playoffs.

Cavaliers-Hawks Pick

Both Cleveland and Atlanta have been hot on the offensive end of the floor in recent weeks, and as a result I believe we will likely see a high-scoring game here.

Cleveland may be the top-ranked defensive team in the NBA, but a large reason for that ranking is because of its defensive play at home. On the road, the Cavaliers lose a significant amount of production defensively, seeing their Defensive Rating rise nearly 6.0 points to 112.5. We saw this Hawks team take advantage of that in their last home matchup against Cleveland, a game where Atlanta scored 136 points.

Cleveland scored 119 points of its own in that matchup, and I expect the Cavs to reach a similar number as the Hawks have surrendered an average of 124.8 points per game in their last six home games.

I like the over in this matchup at the current total of 234 and I would play it up to 235.5.

Pick: Over 234 (-110)