Free Pick: San Antonio Spurs vs. Portland Trailblazers
San Antonio Spurs (32-24 SU, 31-24-1 ATS) vs. Portland Trailblazers (32-21 SU, 29-24 ATS)
When: Thursday, February 7th, 2019 – 10:30 PM ET
Where: Moda Center – Portland, OR
Point Spread: SA +5. / POR -5.5 (SportsBetting.ag)
Power Rankings: Portland -6
Takeaways From San Antonio and Portland’s Most Recent Games
The Spurs were rolled last night when they renewed their rivalry with the two-time defending champions, the Golden State Warriors. San Antonio headed up to face the champs at the fabled Oracle Arena, and Golden State made it look easy defeating San Antonio 141-102. The Spurs failed to come in under the number as a 15-point underdog.
The Trailblazers saw a three-game winning streak snapped when they hosted the Miami Heat two days ago when they fell by a score of 118-108. Portland closed as a seven-point favorite and also saw a three-game cover streak ended as a result.
How the Public is Betting the San Antonio-Portland Game
Currently, 57% of the betting public like Portland here laying the points. As a result, we have seen Portland spot an additional point compared to what it was laying when the line opened at -4.
The Spurs and the Trailblazers last met in December in San Antonio when the Spurs went to work on Portland defeating them 131-118 despite closing as a one-point underdog.
Heading into this Western Conference collision both teams enter in relatively good health with minimal injury concerns to key personnel.
Rest Concerns and Advantages
The Spurs are in the midst of a four-game road trip that began three days ago in Sacramento and will culminate with San Antonio finishing it off in Memphis before the all-star break. This is San Antonio’s third game in four days which from the eyes of many will render this one all but a scheduled loss. Contrarily, Rip City has been home for nearly two weeks as they are finishing their home-stand here until taking the road for two games against Dallas and Golden State on Sunday and Monday. The Trailblazers have not taken the court in two days while the Spurs were in action just last night in Oakland against the Warriors. It’s safe to say that the rest advantage is significantly in Portland’s favor.
The Spurs Will Look To Bounce Back By Dialing Up From Downtown
The Spurs are the best in the league in shooting the three-pointer as they hit a remarkable 40.5% of their attempts. To complement this, San Antonio is also the best free-throw shooting team in the land as well as achieving a prolific success rate of 82.4%. San Antonio will need to scoff up all the points Portland is willing to give them as they will have their hands filled against a physical Trailblazers team that stands at 22-8 SU at home. The Moda Center is known as one of the most hostile environments in the league, and San Antonio has not fared well on the road going 10-17 SU away from home. However, the good news remains that Portland sits 25th against the three-pointer allowing opponents to hit 36.4% of their shots. San Antonio should be able to cash in on this edge. Combining this with stronger bench play and an advantage in turnovers, the Spurs have several angles to work to stay competitive here.
Portland Will Look To Wear San Antonio Down By Working The Boards
The Trailblazers are one of the better teams in the NBA in working the boards and generating second chances while also eliminating the opposition’s chances to get a second chance. In offensive rebounding, Portland sits third procuring 47.9 offensive rebounds per game. On the flip side, the Blazers are sixth in rebounds against giving up just 43.5 rebounds per contest defensively. The latter is especially good news for Portland as they are up against a San Antonio team that sits 21st in the NBA in offensive rebounding (44.2 boards per outing).
The most prominent trend in this series is the fact that the Home Team has won the last four contests outright. Outside of this in against the spread markets, the Spurs have been a profitable choice as they are 3-1-1 ATS in the previous five meetings. For Over/Under players, the Over is 22-8 ATS in the last 30 contests.
Keith’s Pick to Cover the Spread: Portland -5.5
On paper, the Spurs look to have plenty of avenues to work here to pull the upset. However, the edge in the rest department is simply too much for the Spurs to overcome. Portland is the fresher of the two teams, and they have been enjoying the high life at home since January 25th. San Antonio comes into this game on limited rest along with the potential to be rusty from travel wear and tear. When you combine this with the ugly loss they suffered last night against Golden State, the Spurs are even more prone to come in flat after being demoralized. The Spurs are thinking about getting to the All-Star break to regroup and address their road woes when the time comes. After all, San Antonio will start off on the road when action resumes in late February with yet another three-game road trip to the East Coast. Given the coaching acumen of this team, it is not unimaginable to conclude that the Spurs will make adjustments when that time comes. However, this match will be a tough one for the Spurs. Portland will take advantage of home court and more rest to win big on their own floor.