The Hawks Look to Take Advantage of a Shorthanded Blazers Team

Friday, March 29, 2019 2:16 PM UTC

Friday, Mar. 29, 2019 2:16 PM UTC

Trae Young is making his campaign for Rookie of the Year, as the Hawks continue to develop their core.

Portland (47-27 SU, 41-32-1 ATS) vs Atlanta (27-48 SU, 38-37 ATS)

Friday 7:30 P.M. ET

Free NBA Pick: Hawks ATS

Best Line Offered: Pinnacle

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The role of spoiler is becoming very familiar for the Atlanta Hawks as they try to complicate the playoff prospects of another team on Thursday when the Portland Trail Blazers come to town for their only visit of the season.

The Hawks have won three straight, including Tuesday's 130-120 win at New Orleans. The two previous wins came against Utah, which increased the difficult of the Jazz earning a first-round homecourt advantage in the Western Conference, and Philadelphia, which damaged the Sixers' odds of moving up to second place in the Eastern Conference.

Portland is 47-27 after Wednesday's 118-98 win at Chicago. The Trail Blazers are in third place, 3 1/2 games behind Denver, but only one-half game ahead of Houston and 2 1/2 games ahead of Utah and the Los Angeles Clippers. The stop in Atlanta is the second leg of a four-game road trip. The Blazers are playing well, however, and brings a five-game winning streak into the season finale against Atlanta. The Trail Blazers defeated the Hawks 120-111 on Jan. 26 in Portland.

But the Trail Blazers will be without Jusuf Nurkic, who sustained a season-ending leg injury in a double-overtime win against Brooklyn on Monday. The center's left leg snapped when he came down with a rebound he underwent surgery to repair the compound fracture. Nurkic was averaging 15.6 points and 10.4 rebounds. The Trail Blazers plan to use veteran Enes Kanter at center. He had 13 points and six rebounds in 22 minutes against Chicago. They will also lean more on Zach Collins and Meyers Leonard, who played Wednesday for the first time since March 9.

Atlanta (27-48) has won five of its last eight games and much of the credit goes to rookie point guard Trae Young, who is making a push for NBA Rookie of the Year honors. Young had 33 points and 12 assists for his 27th double-double on Tuesday. Over the last four games he is averaging 27.3 points and 11.5 assists.

Portland being favored by three points n the road without C.J. McCollum and Nurkic will be too much to handle for the Hawks, who are a respectable 17-7 ATS at home and are carrying alot of momentum as they finish the regular season.

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Trae Young is the first NBA rookie ever to have four games with 30+ points, 10+ assists and 5+ threes. pic.twitter.com/BLJqNaMpEa

— FOX Sports: Hawks (@HawksOnFSSE) March 27, 2019
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