NBA Pick on Utah Jazz ATS vs. Trail Blazers in Portland

LT Profits Sports Group

Saturday, April 11, 2015 5:19 PM UTC

Saturday, Apr. 11, 2015 5:19 PM UTC

Each day LT Profits Sports seeks an overlay side that has a better chance of cashing than its spread, offering long term value. Here is their Side Value Play for Saturday.


The underdog seems to have inherent value Saturday night with the favorite not having much to play from when the Utah Jazz (36-43, 16-23 away) pay a visit to the Portland Trail Blazers (51-28, 32-8 home) at the Moda Center in Portland, OR at 10:05 ET in a game available on ROOT.

The point spread at Pinnacle Sports has Utah as a road underdog for this contest with the current line at +6 with odds of -106.

Short-Handed Trail Blazers
The Trail Blazers come off of a 116-105 loss to the Warriors in Oakland despite getting a team high 27 points from leading scorer LaMarcus Aldridge, and they will now be without the services of both Aldridge, who is averaging 23.5 points per game, and Arron Afflalo for this contest. Aldridge apparently strained his foot during Thursday’s loss while Afflalo may have the more severe injury as he strained his shoulder and will be out one to two weeks.

The Jazz meanwhile continue to be pesky NBA picks over the second half of the season as they lost narrowly 89-88 last night to a Memphis Grizzlies team fighting hard for a division title back home in Salt Lake City, with Utah at least covering the point spread as a 2½-point underdog. As has been the case often the past two months or so, 7-foot-1 center Rudy Gobert had another double-double for the Jazz with 14 points and 14 rebounds.

Not Much to Play For
The Blazers are pretty much locked into the fourth seed in the Western Conference, but it now also seems highly unlikely that they will have home court advantage in their first round playoff series as the trail the Los Angeles Clippers and Houston Rockets, currently tied for the fifth seed, by two games each with three games remaining. Portland is the four-seed because it won the Northwest Division, but that seeding now appears to be just ceremonious.

Thus they are sitting Aldridge here even though he showed no noticeable sign of the reported foot injury vs. the Warriors, preferring to play it safe with their top scorer while seemingly resigned to the fact that they will open the playoffs on the road. That lack of motivation here combined with a lack of active forwards that may lead to extended playing time for the unheralded Meyers Leonard make it difficult to give points with Portland in this spot.

Jazz Have Winning Record with Gobert Starting
Meanwhile the Jazz have a winning record since inserting Gobert into the starting lineup following the trade of Enes Kanter at the trading deadline, as he has posted some monstrous stat lines! Gobert has eight double-doubles in his last 10 games and he just missed having 10 straight double-doubles, as in the two games during this span where he did not record one, he had eight points in one game and nine rebounds in the other.

Gobert is averaging 13.6 points and 12.8 rebounds in those last 10 games he is also averaging 2.3 blocked shots per game for the season to rank fourth in the NBA in that department. Rudy has a chance to dominate tonight with the Blazers rather small in the frontcourt with their backups, and do not forget that Utah’s leading scorer, the 6-foor-8 swingman Gordon Hayward (19.3 points per game) can also take advantage of that weakness.

Back-to-Back Not a Problem for Utah
The Jazz are a young team that has not really been bothered by playing back-to-back nights, in fact going 5-0-1 ATS in their last six games when playing with no rest. Utah is also 5-1-1 ATS in its last seven games overall.

Look for the Jazz to stay hot against the number here as Utah again covers the point spread when it visits Portland on Saturday.

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NBA Pick: Jazz +6 (-106)

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