Portland Trailblazers vs. Denver Nuggets Preview and Pick – Point Spread – Betting Odds

Portland Trailblazers (46-29 SU 41-31-2 ATS) vs. Denver Nuggets (48-27 SU 31-39-5 ATS) Pepsi Center, Denver, CO Thursday April 1, 2010 on TNT
by Jason Green at Predictem.com

Point Spread: Blazers +4.5 / Nuggets -4.5
Over/Under: 201.5

Get the best betting odds for this game (-105) at 5Dimes.

Tonight in a Western Conference match up between a couple of teams that will make the playoffs the Denver Nuggets host the Portland Trailblazers. Even though both teams are post-season bound the remaining games for each are still important.

The Denver Nuggets really need to move up in the West, as they are currently in the 5th spot and unless they move up to 4th the will hit the road, where they are 2 games under .500, for the 1st round of the playoffs. The Portland Trailblazers are in the 7th position in the West and wants to avoid the 8th spot so they do not have to face the L.A. Lakers in the 1st round of the playoffs.

The Nuggets have been struggling for the past couple of weeks and they have lost 2 in a row and are only 4-6 in their last 10 games. Conversely, the Blazers are hot winners of 4 straight and 9 of their last 10 games.

This season the Nuggets are 30-6 at home and the Blazers are 21-16 on the road.

Since the Blazers have been s hot and the Nuggets have not Portland only trails Denver by 2 games in the West.

One of the reasons the Nuggets have struggled is because of their offense. For the year the Nuggets rank 3rd in the league averaging 106.9 ppg, but in 7 of their last 8 games they have not cracked the 100-point barrier. That is not good facing the Blazers, who have one of the best defensive teams in the league.

Carmelo Anthony has to bounce back from one of his worst performances in the season in the Nuggets last game only scoring 11 points on 3/14 shooting. He may bounce back tonight, as he is averaging 34.3 ppg on 52.4% shooting against Portland this season.

In their last game the Blazers crushed the New York Knicks 118-90 last night. The high scorer for Portland in the game was LeMarcus Aldridge going for 21 points on 10/12 shooting. For the game the Blazers shot lights out going 50/95 from the floor for a FG% of 52.6%. On D the Blazers allowed the Knicks to shoot 32/74 for a FG% of 43.2%.

The Nuggets lost to the Dallas Mavericks in their last game 109-93 on Monday night. The high scorer for Denver in the game was J.R. Smith going for 27 points on 10/16 shooting. For the game the Nuggets were pretty cold only shooting 32/78 from the floor for a FG% of 41%. On defense the Nuggets allowed the Mavericks to shoot 38/81 for a FG% of 46.9%.

This season the Nuggets rank 3rd in the league in scoring (106.9 ppg) and the Blazers rank 21st (98.1 ppg). On defense Portland is solid and Denver is not, as the Blazers rank 4th in opponents’ points allowed (94.7 ppg) while the Nuggets only rank 22nd (102.7 ppg). The Blazers have been slightly better on the boards this season, as they have a rebounding differential of +1.8 rpg while the Nuggets are in the negative at -0.4 rpg.

According to the Sagarin NBA ratings the Nuggets rank 5th (93.99) and the Blazers rank (93.08).

Portland is 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 games, 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 road games, and 9-3-1 ATS in their last 13 road games against teams with a home winning percentage of greater than 60%.

Portland has an Under record of 7-2 in their last 9 road games and an Over record of 12-4 in their last 16 road games against teams with a winning home record.

Denver is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games, 0-6 ATS in their last 6 games as a favorite, and 0-8-1 ATS in their last 9 games.

Denver has an Under record of 7-1 in their last 8 games and an Over record of 5-0 in their last 5 home games against teams with a winning road record.

On the injury front PF Kenyon Martin is Out for Denver while Portland is not reporting any significant injuries.

Jason’s Pick: This spread could go either way. I believe the betting value here is with the UNDER. Good luck!