August 13: Portland Trailblazers versus Brooklyn Nets
Portland enters play with a two-game winnings streak and are 8th in the Western Conference with a record of 34-39.
Brooklyn has won their last three and are 7th in the Eastern Conference at 35-36. The Trailblazers are a 9-point favorite with an over/under of 235.
Comparing the teams in major statistical categories, the Trailblazers are averaging 114.7 points per game but are 26th in points allowed at 115.9 per game.
The Nets are averaging 111.5 points per game and are 12th in points allowed per game at 112.
Portland is one of the best three-point shooting teams in the league, hitting nearly 38 percent, while the Nets are in the lower half, converting only 34.2 percent.
Brooklyn has a 47.9 to 45.4 rebounding edge per game, but the Trailblazers take care of the ball much better,
4th in turnovers are 12.5 per game versus 14.6 per game for the Nets.
The Trailblazers are led by Damian Lillard who has been on fire in the bubble. He is averaging 29.8 points, eight assist and hitting 40 percent from beyond the arc.
C.J. McCollum completes a strong backcourt, averaging 22.2 points, hitting 38 percent from three-point range.
Josef Nurkic and Hassan Whiteside do the hard inside work, averaging a combined 28.5 points and 23.9 rebounds per game.
Carmelo Anthony chips in 15.5 per game, while Rodney Hood is draining nearly 50 percent from long range.
The Nets have been playing since the restart without top scores Kyrie Irving and Spencer Dinwiddie.
Caris LeVert and Joe Harris lead available players at 14.4 points per game, while Harris is hitting 43 percent from 3pt range.
Taurean Prince, Tyler Johnson, and Jarrett Allen complete the unit that scores in double-digits per game.
DeAndre Jordan hauls in 10 rebounds per game and will battle Portland’s big men.
It’s difficult to see the Nets having enough firepower to keep up with the pace that Lillard and company have been putting up lately.
The Trailblazers have been porous on defense, which leads me to believe this will be a high scoring contest and will keep the game relatively close.
Take the “over” in a game that Portland should win, but the Nets will cover.