NBA Picks: All Factors Point To Blazers & Raptors 'Over' 208

Kevin Stott

Friday, March 4, 2016 1:03 PM UTC

Friday, Mar. 4, 2016 1:03 PM UTC

Damian Lillard and the upstart Portland Trail Blazers travel to the Air Canada Centre in Toronto on Friday night to play Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan and the Raptors. Let's check the NBA odds.

Portland Trail Blazers vs. Toronto Raptors
DeMar DeRozan and the Toronto Raptors (40-19 SU, 22-6 SU Home) welcome Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers (33-29 SU, 19-12 SU Home) to the Air Canada Centre on Friday evening for this inter-conference date and second of two meetings between the two clubs this Regular Season with the Raptors winning the first meeting at the Rose Garden, 110-93 exactly a month ago on on Feb. 4. NBA odds makers here in Sin City have opened the Raptors up as 5-point favorites (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) here with the game’s Total (Points) set at 207½ (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook). The Money Line (Winner) odds see host Toronto priced at -190 (Pinnacle) with host Portland lined at +171 on the takeback.


Portland Trail Blazers
The Portland Trail Blazers (35-27 ATS Record, 17-14 ATS Home) and Head Coach Terry Stotts are still in 7th place and a Playoff position in the competitive Western Conference and are an impressive 8-2 SU in their L10 as they continue a 6-game Midwest-East Coast trip which has already taken them to Chicago, Indianapolis, New York City and Boston and now to Canada to play the dinosaurs before heading back stateside to Detroit to play the Pistons on Sunday (NBA-TV, 6:00 p.m. EST/3:00 p.m. PST) to end the long stint against East Coast teams who all play in Time Zones (CT, ET) 2 or 3 hours ahead of Portland. But, now worries for the Trail Blazers (103.5 AF-102.3 AA) and superstar PG Damian Lillard (25.4 ppg, 7.0 apg) as Portland got off to a 3-1 start before losing to the Celtics in Boston on Wednesday night, 116-93 as the C’s won their 12th straight game at Home. In the Loss, the Blazers were led by Lillard (20 points) and CJ McCollum (17 points) but the Portland starting frontcourt—C Mason Plumlee (9 points), PF Noah Vonleh (6 points) and SF Al-Farouq El-Aminu (2 points)—could only muster 17 points and Portland (500/1 to win NBA Championship, BetVictor) also shot just 40.5% from the Field (34-84). The Trail Blazers only have an Injury issue with SF Al-Farouq Aminu (Hand) who is currently (Thursday) listed as Questionable for this game.


Toronto Raptors
The Toronto Raptors (33-26-0 ATS, 15-12-0 ATS Home) and Head Coach Dwane Casey have played really well this season, and at 40-19 SU, deserve some major credit and heading into play on Thursday, Toronto (33/1 to win NBA Championship, Stan James) sat just 2 games behind LeBron James and the Eastern Conference-leading Cleveland Cavaliers (42-17). Yes folks, Toronto and the dynamic Guard duo of Kyle Lowry and De Marcus DeRozan and C Jonas Valanciunas can actually win the East. In their last game on Wednesday night here at Home in the friendly confines of the Air Canada Centre, the Raptors won (and covered) over the upstart Utah Jazz, 104-94, as Lowry had 32 points, backcourt mate DeRozan 31 as Toronto won its 11th straight game at Home, a new club record. C Valanciunas (10 points), F Luis Scola (6 rebounds, 4 assists), F Terrence Ross (11 points), G Cory Joseph (7 points), F Patrick Patterson (7 rebounds, 4 points), C Lucas Nogueira (4 points) and C Bismack Biyombo (7 rebounds, 3 blocks) all had nice games and the Raptors young and improving Bench combined for 25 points and 21 rebounds in the victory. On the Injury front here for Toronto (7/1 to win Eastern Conference, Coral), SF DeMarre Carroll (Knee) is still Out Indefinitely.


Series Trends, Logical Reasoning and Reasonable Pick
As looked at, when these two teams met earlier this Regular Season at the Moda Center in Portland (Feb. 4) exactly a month ago, the visiting Raptors won outright, 110-103, as 1½-point underdogs (206, Over) as Lowry led all scorers with 30 points and Valanciunas had 11 rebounds and Toronto won Time Zones west (PT) of its Body Clocks. Looking at the L10 meetings in this somewhat infrequent series we see that Portland has done very well, even with the SU and ATS in the last meeting in Portland, going 7-3 ATS and 8-2 SU against Toronto with the Total split at 5-5 in those 10 meetings although 4 of the L5 meetings have gone Over the posted Total. The Home team has been the Point Spread favorite in the L7 meetings in this 2-game-a-year series but Meyers Leonard and the Blazers (33-29-0 O/U) will be looking to exact a little Revenge here on Friday night against the Raptors (31-27-1 O/U).

Trend-wise, Portland is 6-2 ATs in its L8 Friday games and the Trail Blazers are an impressive 10-3 ATS in the L13 meetings in this series. The Under is 6-2 ATS in the L8 Portland Road games, the Under is 8-3 ATS in the Blazers L11 against the Eastern Conference and the Under is 7-3 ATS in the L10 Raptors games played on a Friday. One thing to be really be aware of here is Toronto’s club-record Homecourt Winning Streak (12-games), meaning a win-at-all-costs mentality which usually means points and the Raptors have also been getting it done at the betting window in those L11 (8-3 ATS). The underrated beasts meet here in Ontario. Expect both teams to be up for this one with the Raptors wanting to make it 13-straight at Home and stay hot on the heels of the Cavaliers and the Trail Blazers wanting to get Revenge for that first meeting and to bounce back after losing in Boston (Blazers 19-17 ATS 1 Day Rest). That combination of things should lead to a matching-of-baskets game with both teams topping the 100-point mark in what could be an extremely entertaining game from Toronto. Add Over as your NBA pick.

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Final Score Prediction: Raptors 107  Trail Blazers 103
NBA Pick: Over 208
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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