Our late game this evening will feature the Magic flying all the way to the great northwestern United States for a game with the Blazers. NBA Odds show the Blazers coming in as -6 ½ favorites, and both teams are in need of a win. The Magic are still in the “hunt,” for a playoff spot in the shallow Eastern Conference, while the Blazers are 18-15 SU and currently 8th in the Western Conference playoff chase.
The Magic have been playing a lot better recently, and the future for Florida’s other team has gone from with no hope to having a glimpse of it. The Magic have been playing teams really close in the last few weeks, and their defense is improving by the game. It looks as if they got some nice pieces in return for Dwight Howard, and it also looks like they might have gotten the better end of the deal.
The Blazers on the other hand are another team rebuilding, but are much further down the road than Orlando. The Blazers have a solid starting lineup, and I’m sorry if I’m sounding redundant, but they don’t have anything else. The Blazers are going to have to start wearing down, as their young starters are logging huge minutes. LaMarcus Aldridge doesn’t have a clean injury history, and Wes Matthews is still feeling a hip injury, but is playing through it.
I’m adding the Magic to my NBA picks in this one. Orlando just got back Hedo Turkoglu recently, and his presence along with Jameer Nelson, Aaron Afflalo, Nikola Vucevic and JJ Reddick, this team can play. They are still without Glen Davis, but other young guys have filled in nicely for him. The Magic should give the Blazers all they can handle tonight, six and a half points is too many.
The Sharp Pick: Magic +6.5 at Bookmaker