It seems like a long time ago that the Cleveland Cavaliers got off to a slow start in the 2017-2018 NBA season. The defending Eastern Conference champs are the league’s hottest team with 12 straight victories, and the team has a chance to extend their winning streak by a good margin.

Cleveland has moved up to second in the East by taking advantage of a favorable schedule. LeBron James and Co. should be favored in most of their games for the remainder of 2017.

That’s the case Wednesday night when Cleveland tries to win its 13th game in a row. The Cavs are favored by 12.5 points for their home game against the Sacramento Kings. Sacramento’s 7-16 record puts them nearly 10 games behind Cleveland in the overall NBA standings, and the Kings are only a half-game ahead of the Dallas Mavericks for the worst record in the Western Conference.

On Friday, Cleveland visits the last team in the Eastern Conference playoff picture. The Indiana Pacers are the No.8 seed with a 13-11 record, though they did win by 17 points in Cleveland when the Cavs were struggling to reach .500 at the start of the year.

There should be plenty of eyes on Saturday’s contest between Cleveland and the Philadelphia 76ers. Philadelphia has proven to be one of the NBA’s best young teams, though the No.5 seed in the East was defeated by 22 points when they hosted the Cavs on Nov. 27.

Cleveland’s matchup with Philadelphia is the start of a four-game homestand. The Cavs will host the Atlanta Hawks and Los Angeles Lakers, who have won a combined 13 games. The homestand concludes with a game against the Utah Jazz, who are the West’s No.7 seed.

The Cavs have 12 games left on the schedule in 2017. Maybe the most highly anticipated game of the entire regular season is Cleveland’s matchup with the Golden State Warriors on Christmas Day. Cleveland hasn’t faced Golden State since the Warriors clinched the 2017 NBA Finals in Game 5 at Oracle Arena.

Only two of Cleveland’s wins during their 12-game winning streak have come against teams that are currently in the playoffs. Prior to the winning streak, the Cavs defeated the likes of the Boston Celtics, Milwaukee Bucks and Washington Wizards.

LeBron James Cleveland Cavaliers LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers reacts after dunking against the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on Nov. 30, 2017 in Atlanta. Photo: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Cleveland 2017 Schedule

Wednesday, Dec. 6: vs. Sacramento Kings (7 p.m. EST)

Friday, Dec. 8: at Indiana Pacers (7 p.m. EST)

Saturday, Dec. 9: vs. Philadelphia 76ers (8 p.m. EST)

Tuesday, Dec. 12: vs. Atlanta Hawks (7 p.m. EST)

Thursday, Dec. 14: vs. Los Angeles Lakers (8 p.m. EST)

Saturday, Dec. 16: vs. Utah Jazz (7:30 p.m. EST)

Sunday, Dec. 17: at Washington Wizards (6 p.m. EST)

Tuesday, Dec. 19: at Milwaukee Bucks (8 p.m. EST)

Thursday, Dec. 21: vs. Chicago Bulls (7 p.m. EST)

Monday, Dec. 25: at Golden State Warriors (3 p.m. EST)

Wednesday, Dec. 27: at Sacramento Kings (10 p.m. EST)

Saturday, Dec. 30: at Utah Jazz (8 p.m. EST)