Pacers vs. Cavaliers NBA expert final score prediction and odds for Friday, April 12 (Lay it with Cleveland)

NBA betting preview, prediction and best bet for Pacers-Cavaliers.
Apr 10, 2024; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell (45) celebrates after a play against Memphis.
Apr 10, 2024; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell (45) celebrates after a play against Memphis. / Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

There are plenty of Eastern Conference playoff seeding implications in Friday’s tilt between the Indiana Pacers and Cleveland Cavaliers. 

Indiana is clinging to a one-game lead for the final automatic playoff spot, but can also move up to as high as the No. 4 seed with a pair of wins this week to finish the regular season. The Cavaliers currently hold the No. 4 spot with the No. 5 Magic and Pacers just one game behind them. Can Cleveland hold off the suitors for home court advantage in the first round of the postseason? Here’s the betting preview of the matchup with a best bet. 

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Pacers vs. Cavaliers odds, spread and total

Pacers vs. Cavaliers how to watch

  • Date: Friday, April 12 
  • Game time: 7:30 p.m. EST
  • Venue: Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse
  • How to watch (TV): Bally Sports
  • Pacers record: 46-34
  • Cavaliers record: 47-33

Pacers vs. Cavaliers injury report

Indiana Pacers

  • Isaiah Jackson (hamstring): questionable
  • Bennedict Mathurin (shoulder): out

Cleveland Cavaliers

  • Ty Jerome (ankle): out
  • Sam Merrill (neck): doubtful
  • Dean Wade (knee): out 

Pacers vs. Cavaliers key players to watch

Indiana Pacers

Tyrese Haliburton: After a sizzling start to the season, Haliburton has slowed down as the former first-round pick has averaged less than 17 points per game since the start of February. Haliburton went just 15-of-40 from the field over a three-game stretch before bouncing back in Tuesday’s blowout road win over Toronto, finishing with 30 points on 10-of-16 shooting. 

Cleveland Cavaliers

Donovan Mitchell: Mitchell went just 4-of-13 from the field in Saturday’s road loss to the Lakers before missing the second half of a back-to-back. In his return on Wednesday, Mitchell lit up the Grizzlies for 29 points on 9-of-17 shooting, going 50% from downtown (5-for-10). Mitchell scored 38 points in his lone outing against the Pacers this season. 

Pacers vs. Cavaliers prediction and pick

Does Cleveland have the defense to contain Indiana’s up-tempo attack? The Pacers play at the No. 2 pace in the NBA but the Cavaliers’ defense certainly packs a punch. These two teams met twice early in the season with Indiana pulling away for a pair of victories. In their most recent matchup, Cleveland won a 108-103 defensive struggle on the road.

Indiana is the No. 1 scoring offense in the NBA and puts up 120.8 points per game on the road. The Pacers don’t rely too heavily on perimeter shooting, ranking 16th in the NBA in 3-point attempts per game. Indiana is the No. 1 two-point shooting team in the league and Cleveland’s defense, with formidable frontcourt pieces down low in Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen, is No. 2 defending shots from inside the arc. 

This stylistic matchup between these two teams is extremely different with Cleveland electing to slow it down. Playing at home, the Cavaliers can control the tone of the matchup and take advantage of its limited possessions by shooting effectively against an Indiana defense that is 28th in the NBA in scoring. Lay the short spread with Cleveland. 

Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.

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