A pair of Western Conference teams lock up on the hardwood floor up in the Pacific Northwest. The LA Clippers head up the west coast as they travel to face the Portland Trail Blazers Thursday night. LA is coming in off a 120-109 home win over Minnesota on Monday night. Portland dropped Milwaukee 118-103 at home in their last matchup Tuesday night. The Trail Blazers own a 144-77 edge in the all-time regular-season series between the teams and took three of four matchups last season. That includes a 105-96 win here in the last matchup on March 30.
LA Clippers Try to Bring Home Success on the Road
LA won their second straight game as they tamed the Timberwolves at home Monday night. The Clippers hope to bring their recent success with them on the road to keep that momentum going. LA trailed by two after the opening quarter but rallied to take a four point halftime edge. The Clippers never trailed in the second half, though they saw Minnesota claw within one on a couple of occasions. LA shot 48.9 percent from the field and drained 14 of 31 three-point attempts in the contest while winning the rebounding battle 43-38. Tobias Harris (10 boards) and Danilo Gallinari each had 22 points in the contest to lead the way for the Clippers. LA is 2-3 ATS on the road this season while the over is 3-2 this season in those contests entering Thursday.
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The Clippers are currently 8th in the league in scoring offense with 116.2 points per game. LA is 9th in the league in rebounding with 46.5 boards per game and stand tied for 24th in assists with 22.3 per contest. The Clippers are good defensively, ranking 11th in scoring defense by allowing 109.8 points per game. Tobias Harris is leading LA with 21.3 points plus 8.5 boards a game this season. Danilo Gallinari (20 points, 5.7 rebounds), Lou Williams (19.1 points) and Montrezl Harrell (12.1 points, six boards) all average in double figures. Boban Marjanovic, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Marcin Gortat, Patrick Beverley, Avery Bradley, Luc Mbah a Moute and Mike Scott are all key pieces of the Clippers’ rotation for Doc Rivers. Mbah a Moute missed the last game with a knee injury and he is out indefinitely. Bradley (ankle) and Gortat (undisclosed) are both questionable for this contest. LA is 8th in the league in field goal percentage as they shoot 47.5 percent from the floor. The Clippers are 20th in three pointers a game with 10 per contest and 3rd in three point shooting as they hit 39.8 percent of their long range attempts.
Portland Trail Blazers Look to Win Third Straight
Portland has won two straight and five of their last six as they took care of business against a very good Milwaukee team Tuesday night. The Trail Blazers try to continue their early-season momentum here as they seek a third straight win. Portland led by two after one quarter, extended the lead to six at the half and took firm control with a 34-26 third quarter edge to push the lead to 14. The Trail Blazers didn’t let the Bucks get closer than five down the stretch. Portland shot 52.7 percent from the field, including 17 of 43 from three point range, and controlled the glass by a 52-41 margin. C.J. McCollum led the Trail Blazers with 40 points in the victory. The Trail Blazers are 5-2 ATS at home this season with the over posting a 4-3 mark in those contests.
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— Trail Blazers (@trailblazers) November 7, 2018
The Trail Blazers come into this one 7th in the league in scoring with 117.3 points per game. The Trail Blazers are 2nd in the league in rebounding as they collect 51.8 boards a night. Portland is 28th in the league in assists with 20.5 per contest. The Trail Blazers are above average defensively as they come in 6th in the league by allowing 107.4 points a night. Damian Lillard is leading the team in scoring for the Blazers as he puts up 26.7 points per game while dishing out 5.5 assists per contest. CJ McCollum (20.8 points) and Maurice Harkless are both veteran options for the Blazers. Al-Farouq Aminu (eight points, 8.7 rebounds), Jusuf Nurkic (15 points, 9.9 rebounds), Meyers Leonard, Nik Stauskas (8.3 points) and Evan Turner (10.4 points, 5.5 rebounds) all contribute solidly on the offensive end for Portland’s attack. Zach Collins (10.6 points), Seth Curry, Jake Layman and Caleb Swanigan have to take a step forward this season. Portland is tied for 9th in the league in field goal percentage by shooting 47 percent from the floor. The Trail Blazers are knocking down 11.6 three pointers a night, which is 11th in the league, while ranking 12th in the league by shooting 36.1 percent from downtown.
- Trail Blazers are 9-1 ATS in their last 10 Thursday games
- Trail Blazers are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 vs. Pacific Division teams
- Trail Blazers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall
- Clippers are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 vs. Northwest Division opponents
- Clippers are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600
- Clippers are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a winning home record
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Both teams come in off solid play at this point in time. Each has won two straight games: Portland has won five of six while the Clippers have taken four of their last six contests. There has been quality defense turned in by both teams of late and the Trail Blazers are getting contributions throughout their lineup. The fact that Mbah a Moute is out while Bradley and Gortat are questionable swings the pendulum to the Trail Blazers. You need to be at full strength to contend with Portland’s rotation. Look for the Blazers to keep the heat on the Nuggets in the Northwest Division with a win here.
Prediction: Portland Trail Blazers -5
Full-Game Total Pick
These two teams are extremely balanced. The Trail Blazers are 7th in the league in scoring offense and 6th in scoring defense. On the flip side, LA is 8th in scoring offense and 11th in the league in scoring defense. Both teams will challenge the other on both ends of the floor in an effort to determine superiority. The Trail Blazers have their dynamic backcourt duo of Lillard and McCollum but they’re getting contributions throughout the rotation. Can the Clippers find a way to slow Portland enough to steal one on the road?
The over is 6-1 in the Clippers’ last 7 Thursday games, 4-1 in their last 5 when their opponent scores 100 points or more in their previous game and 4-1 in their last 5 after allowing 100 points or more in their previous game. Portland has seen the over go 4-0 in their last four on Thursday and 6-2 in their last eight after a double-digit victory. Given the way both teams can score, look for this one to be a higher scoring affair that ends up over the number by a few points.
Prediction: Over 225.5
Half-Time Side Pick
This one comes down to health when you get right down to it. Portland is without Harkless, who is out indefinitely with knee soreness, but the fact remains that other guys are stepping up. The Trail Blazers have gotten nice production from guys like Stauskas and Collins to help out in the frontcourt. LA is banged up and the Harris/Gallinari/Williams trio can’t do it all for them. The Clippers battle but in the end, the Trail Blazers gets the upper hand at the half.
Prediction: Portland Trail Blazers -2.5 (-110)
Half-Time Total Bet
Portland is a high octane offense that isn’t afraid to push the pace and go up and down the floor. The Trail Blazers are in the middle of the pack in pace (16th) but rank second in offensive efficiency. On the flip side, the Clippers are 9th in pace and 6th in offensive rating on the year. Expect a fast paced opening half that sees both teams try to run and gun their way to an advantage. That means that this one likely comes in over the total in this contest at the half in a high scoring affair.
Prediction: Over 115.5