Cavaliers to cover and a Friday night NCAAF over? Best Bets for Nov. 4

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Cleveland Cavaliers guard Darius Garland plays against the Boston Celtics during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2022, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

Each day, one of our experts will offer up a best bet (or two or three) that mobile sportsbooks are offering. It might be a traditional spread bet, a player prop or one of the various odds boosts that books offer.

Here are our best bets for Friday, Nov. 4:

TOP PLAY

The play: NBA, Cavaliers -5.5 over Pistons

The odds/bet: -110 ($33 to win $30)

The book: Caesars

Time: 7:10 p.m. ET (Bally Sports Ohio)

Our take: Cleveland has gotten off to a red-hot start after making a series of off-season acquisitions. The Cavaliers are the NBA’s second-best team right now by record at 6-1 (trailing only the 7-0 Milwaukee Bucks). Furthermore, they’re joint-top of the league against the spread with the same record.

Cleveland overcame a 26-point effort from Jayson Tatum and the reigning Eastern Conference champions, the Boston Celtics, in a 114-113 overtime win on Wednesday. Darius Garland posted 29 points, 12 assists and 5 rebounds in his return to action to help secure the victory.

This win was a statement to the rest of the league that the new-look Cleveland was here to stay. J. B. Bickerstaff’s men are flying high right now.

On the other hand, the Detroit Pistons have slipped up out of the gates. They’re 2-7 to start the year and their average margin of defeat is 15.7 points. Both of Detroit’s wins have come at home — which is where it’ll be against the Cavs — there’s just no way to convince us that the Pistons cover in this game.

Donovan Mitchell (questionable) missing this game after rolling his ankle midweek would be a start for Detroit, but Garland’s return poses a whole new problem in and of itself. Bickerstaff’s team matches up really well all across the floor against its Friday night opponents.

The Pistons will drop to 4-6 against the spread and 2-8 overall when the Cavaliers cover the 5.5-point line at Little Caesars Arena.

UMASS AT UCONN, ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED?

The play: NCAAF, Massachusetts at Connecticut over 40

The odds/bet: -110 ($11 to win $10)

The book: Caesars

Time/TV: 7:00 p.m. ET (CBS Sports Network)

Our take: We love over/under lines that are this low, especially during weekday college football games. These teams are regarded as two of the NCAA’s worst teams — although the Huskies deserve credit for starting to turn things around under Jim L. Mora — although, they have proven they can score points at times this season.

7 of the last 10 meetings between these two rivals have seen more than 40 points scored between them. Prepare for a barn burner in East Hartford.

HOW WE’VE FARED

Thursday’s best bets

NFL, Texans +14 over Eagles (WON $30)

NFL player prop, Davis Mills not to throw an interception vs. Eagles (LOST $10)

Thursday’s profit/loss: +$20 (1-1)

Total for the week: +$105.70 (4-3, 1 pending)

Total for November: +$79 (3-2, 1 pending)

Total for 2022: +$95.30 (282-308)

NOTE: If a line or odds are minus, it considers the juice one must lay to place the bet. Ex: Team A is -160 on the money line, one would have to bet $160 to win $100 (or $16 to win $10). OR Team B is a 5-point favorite at -110, one would have to bet $110 to win $100 (or $11 to win $10.)

Conversely, on positive lines, if Team C is +140 on the money line, $100 would bring in $140 (or $10 to win $14).

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