The Brooklyn Nets and the Portland Trail Blazers are both on a roll, but only one gets to extend their own win streak.
Catch this game live on Saturday, May 1, at 8 AM, Manila time
HOME TEAM: Brooklyn Nets (43-20, 25-7 at home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Landry Shamet
- SG: Tyler Johnson
- SF: Joe Harris
- PF: Kevin Durant
- PF: Jeff Green
The Nets extended their win streak to four games by taking down the Indiana Pacers on the road Friday, 130-113. Kevin Durant roasted Indiana for 42 points on 16-24 shooting to go with 10 assists in 36 minutes.
Without Kyrie Irving and James Harden, Durant had all the power in the world to demand touches and with the way he converted those into buckets, there’s no stopping him from getting the same load against Portland this Saturday. Harden is not close to returning while Irving is a big question mark for the rematch with the Blazers, so it’s going to be Durant who’ll lead Brooklyn’s offense that’s averaging 118.7 points per game this season and just put up 124.7 points over the team’s last three outings.
Durant did not suit up in Brooklyn’s 116-112 road win against the Blazers back in March, but the Nets clearly had their way on offense. That could be the case again, as Portland’s sports a woeful defense that’s second-worst in the NBA in adjusted defensive rating (116.7). The Nets are 3-0 against the spread in their last three road games.
ROAD TEAM: Portland Trail Blazers (34-28, 18-12 on the road)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Damian Lillard
- SG: CJ McCollum
- SF: Norman Powell
- PF: Robert Covington
- C: Jusuf Nurkic
The Blazers are starting to find their footing again after a lengthy stretch of nothing but losses. Following a five-game losing skid, Portland has now won its last two games, beating the Indiana Pacers (133-112) and the Memphis Grizzles (130-109), both on the road last Wednesday and Thursday, respectively.
The Blazers’ offense has picked up of late, having averaged 131.5 points in their last couple of games while shooting an insane 46.5 3FG%. At some point, those numbers are going to come down, but don’t count out Portland extending this hot stretch in Brooklyn. After all, the Nets have one of the lousiest defenses in the league. The Nets are just 26th in terms of adjusted defensive rating with 114.2 points allowed per 100 possessions.
The Trail Blazers hit 19 threes in their loss to Brooklyn and also didn’t have Jusuf Nurkic at the time. With their guns blazing right now and a deeper frontcourt, the Blazers should feel confident about their chances against Brooklyn. The Blazers are also 4-2 against the spread in their last six games overall.
Spread: These two teams will torch each other’s defense, and a fresher Blazers team will come away with the win. Take the Blazers to cover +1.5.
Over/Under: Great offenses and bad defenses are the basic narratives for this game, but the firepower might not be enough because of the missing players. Take the Under(240.5)