Blazers Focus on Securing Playoff Seed and Routing Mavericks

Tuesday, April 3, 2018 2:00 PM UTC

Tuesday, Apr. 3, 2018 2:00 PM UTC

Portland needs to win three of its final five games to lock up the West's third seed. Tonight's game in Dallas provides a nice opportunity for them to lower their magic number.

<h2 style="text-align:center"><a href="" title="Trail Blazers vs. Mavericks">NBA Tuesday: Trail Blazers vs. Mavericks</a></h2><h2 style="text-align:center">Free NBA Pick:<strong> </strong>Blazers -8½</h2><h2 style="text-align:center">Best Line Offered:<strong> </strong><a href=";book=5dimes" rel="nofollow" title="Top Rated Sportsbook">5Dimes</a></h2><p>[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":3264231, "sportsbooksIds":[19,999996,93,139,1275], "LineTypeId":1, "PeriodTypeId":1}[/]</p><p>The Mavs have been in tank mode for some time now, but only recently have they started listing their better players as questionable. Dirk Nowitzki and Dwight Powell are questionable for tonight. If they don't play, an offense already struggling will be even worse.</p><p>Dallas' offense has gone into the gutter recently as they prioritize getting looks at younger players over winning. Even at home tonight the Mavericks might not score more than 90 points against what has become a very good defense.</p><p>Since the All-Star break, Portland owns the league’s third-best defensive rating at 101.7. They'll bring that defensive intensity into tonight's game. The Mavs have not scored more than 93 points in each of their last three games, and the Blazers have held their past two opponents to less than 100.</p><p>Considering the Blazers need to win easy games like this to keep their favorable playoff seed, they should come in focused -- even as -8½ road favorites on the <a href="" title="NBA Odds">NBA odds board</a>. Portland has beaten Dallas SU and ATS twice this season, once in each location, and with your <a href="" title="Free NBA Picks">NBA picks</a> they will do it again.</p>
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