The Blazers just clawed their way back to pick up a nice road win over the Clippers last night. Can they keep it going with another victory, this time at home? We've examined the NBA odds closely.
Just like the earlier game of the night, which pits Chicago against Oklahoma City, the spread is very tight here. The Trail Blazers are favored by just two points on their home court against the visiting Mavericks, who do have the benefit of additional rest.
The O/U is trading at 199 on NBA odds right now, which is once again right in line with the other matchup of the night. Both teams rank in the top 10 in points scored per game, but the Trail Blazers also rank highly (ninth) on the defensive end of the court too. Something has to give.
Portland Trail Blazers
The Trail Blazers enter tonight having won four straight games, with the wins coming over San Antonio, Oklahoma City, Sacramento and the Los Angeles Clippers. That's some pretty good competition Portland has overcome, aside from the victory over the Kings. The streak was topped off by a great come-from-behind win over the Clippers.
It looked like Portland was destined to lose, as they were down by quite a bit with only a matter of minutes to go. However, some clutch plays from Nicolas Batum and some horrible free throw shooting from Los Angeles helped the Trail Blazers erase the deficit and force overtime, where they would eventually pull away for the win. Batum came up huge, while LaMarcus Aldridge came through with 29 points and nine rebounds.
In the grand scheme of things, the Trail Blazers are sitting in a great spot, as they're 40-19 overall, which is good for the third seed in the Western Conference. They've protected their home court in tremendous fashion and will look to keep that going tonight in what should be a highly competitive game against the Mavericks.
Off since Monday's win over the Pelicans, the Mavericks should be nice and rested for tonight's game in Portland. They're 40-22 overall, putting them in a dead even tie with the Clippers for the fifth spot in the conference, so each and every game from here on out is of the utmost importance. There's no room to rest on your laurels in the West, that no one can deny.
The win over New Orleans should give Dallas some confidence heading into this evening. The Mavericks took advantage of a Pelicans team that was without Anthony Davis, as six different players scored in double figures in the win. Monta Ellis led the way with 20 points, while Amar'e Stoudemire and Devin Harris both scored 14 points off the bench. As a team, Dallas shot 48.1 percent from the field.
Injury wise, the Mavericks are starting to look better, as Tyson Chandler is back and Chandler Parsons looks to be close to returning too. Dallas has one of the deepest rotations out there and that's going to serve them well down the stretch. That being said, it's never easy playing the Trail Blazers in Portland.
We are a tad worried that heavy legs could get in the way, but the Trail Blazers have been playing exceptionally well lately, and we know they have a great home-court advantage.
Dallas has gone a solid 4-2 over its last six games and hasn't been shabby at all (19-12) on the road, but the absence of Chandler Parsons has really hurt the team. Tyson Chandler being banged up hasn't helped either.
Having gone 25-6 on their own court, the Trail Blazers have been a force to be reckoned with in front of their fans. We think the crowd will help spur them on to the win tonight and will therefore add Portland to our NBA picks as a short favorite.
Free NBA Pick: Portland Trail Blazers -2 at Bookmaker.