Bet on Suns to Bounce Back Against Trailblazers With Your NBA Picks

David Lawrence

Friday, October 30, 2015 4:59 PM GMT

Friday, Oct. 30, 2015 4:59 PM GMT

The Trail Blazers & Suns are two Western Conference teams in difficult positions this season. While the top six places in the conference figure to be filled out by a set number of teams.

Momentum
The Blazers have momentum coming in here, and the Suns do not. Portland smoked the New Orleans Pelicans on Wednesday night, as C.J. McCollum soared for 37 points and stole the show. McCollum has long been a gifted offensive player, dating back to his college days at Lehigh, when he engineered an upset of Mike Krzyzewski and Duke in the first game of the NCAA tournament. McCollum has yet to find his stride in the NBA, but perhaps that is changing after his sensational performance on Wednesday.

Phoenix is in the exact opposite position relative to the Blazers. The Suns didn’t do a single thing right and got blown out on the NBA odds at home by the Dallas Mavericks. One of the big concerns for Phoenix was that with Marcus Morris now in Detroit, brother Markieff Morris – who is still on the Suns and was not happy at all with being separated from his brother – would not play well and would detract from team chemistry. Whether that had an effect on Wednesday’s loss to Dallas is unclear, but the Suns certainly did not look like a very coordinated bunch. Their performance on defense – especially on the perimeter – was so bad that an out-of-shape Raymond Felton was able to post a plus-34 plus-minus rating, which simply should not happen. Felton wrecked the Suns’ defense, a clear indication that players were not in the right position to make defensive plays against the Mavericks. It was a terrible start to the season for a team which wants to be able to get one of the final two playoff spots in the West.

 

Matchup
With this matchup, Portland has to think that it can exploit Phoenix’s perimeter defense with McCollum and superstar point guard Damian Lillard. A first quick step to the basket on dribble penetration, combined with kickout passes for three-point shots, fall right in line with what the Blazers like to do on offense. They want to spread out opposing defenses and create a lot of three-point shots, especially corner threes, which NBA stat geeks like to promote, given the shorter distance to the rim compared to top-of-the-key threes.

The Suns need Tyson Chandler and the rest of their big men to close down the paint when the Blazers drive to the basket. Phoenix also has to be relentless in grabbing rebounds, to deny Portland extra chances. This game for Phoenix starts and ends with effort more than anything else.

 

What’s The Pick?
The season is just getting started, and bettors will be challenged to balance what they’ve seen in game one with an awareness that first games of the season don’t always lead to similar results and patterns in a second game. 

The line started with Phoenix as a 4.5-point favorite and has remained there, so the public isn’t surging toward Portland’s side. Blazers were awesome on Wednesday, but the New Orleans team they defeated is extremely thin, ravaged by injuries. Phoenix is not that same team, and after the Suns played horribly, they are going to be very motivated to bounce back. Take the Suns with your NBA picks here.

NBA Pick: Phoenix -4.5 (-110) at Bovada

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