Cleveland begin life after LeBron tonight and look unlikely to get anything out of Toronto.
Toronto – 12 on the Spread @ 10/11
Despite James’ departure, the Cavs have retained much of last year’s team and are unlikely to be as bad as everyone expects.
A fifth win in their last seven regular season openers looks unlikely though against a Raptors team on the up having won 50-plus games in each of the last three seasons.
Therefore it will surprise those who have not followed the off-season that they changed coach to Danny Nurse and let DeMar DeRozan go, bringing in Danny Green and Kawhi Leonard.
Both will add experience to what is a young roster, while the depth they provide could also be crucial in deciding if they can again top the Eastern Conference.
Ironically it was a 4-0 thrashing by Cleveland in last season’s Conference semi-finals that prompted the rethink at the Air Canada Center and this looks the perfect chance for them to earn a degree of revenge.
Stephens to win 0-2 @ 33/20
Sloane Stephens has already booked her place at the WTA Tour Finals and is looking to continue her momentum this week in Moscow.
A first round bye sets her up to face Tunisian qualifier Ons Jabeur who will be confident after an impressive opening 6-1 6-2 win over Ekaterina Makarova.
Stephens reached the last 16 in Beijing and is perhaps in need of a good week after first round exits in both Wuhan and Tokyo.
This will be the pair’s first meeting and the third seed should have too much class for her industrious opponent.
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