The Golden State Warriors and the Portland Trail Blazers cross each other’s path for the third time this season. They split their first two meetings. Which team will take the upper hand?
Catch this game live on Thursday, March 4, at 11 AM, Manila time
HOME TEAM: Portland Trail Blazers (19-14, 9-6 at home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Damian Lillard
- SG: Gary Trent Jr.
- SF: Derrick Jones Jr.
- PF: Robert Covington
- C: Enes Kanter
It took a vintage performance from Carmelo Anthony to get the Blazers out of a rut. Anthony turned back the hands of time and scored 29 points off the bench to lead Portland to a 123-111 home win on Tuesday, which also snapped the team’s four-game losing streak.
Despite winning just once in their last five games, the Blazers are still above .500 against the spread this season. They will enter Thursday’s game against Golden State with an 18-15 ATS record. If anything, the Blazers have also covered the spread in nine of their last 18 games following a victory. It’s nice to see Anthony have a throwback performance like that, but at the end of the day, it’s Damian Lillard who will dictate how far this team will go.
Lillard had 23 points against Charlotte and he’ll be raring to have another showdown with Stephen Curry. Dame has scored a total of 66 points in the first two games against Golden State this season. Portland won the first matchup on January 2 on the road, 123-98.
Portland could still be sizzling when it steps on the court this Thursday after hitting 24 of 46 attempts from behind the arc in the Charlotte game. Portland is second in the NBA with 16.3 3 FGM per game.
ROAD TEAM: Golden State Warriors (9-16, 7-10 on the road)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Stephen Curry
- SG: Kelly Oubre Jr.
- SF: Andrew Wiggins
- PF: Draymond Green
- C: James Wiseman
The last time the Warriors and the Blazers faced each other, Stephen Curry incinerated Portland with 62 points on 18-of-31 shooting from the field with 8 3-pointers on 16 attempts to lead Golden State to a 137-122 home win on January 4.
At this point, it’s not hard to believe Curry putting up that many points on any given game with how he’s been playing this season. Forced to carry a heavier load on offense due to injuries on the team, Curry is now averaging 29.5 points on 47.8 FG% to go with an insane 41.3 3 FG% this season. Curry scored just 16 points (5-13 FG) and Golden State shot just 40.7 FG% in a 117-91 road loss to the Los Angeles Lakers last Monday, but the Warriors could recapture their offensive brilliance against Portland’s defense that has more holes than Swiss cheese.
Portland is allowing 115.1 points per game this season and owns the second-worst adjusted defensive rating in the NBA. Curry, Andrew Wiggins, and Kelly Oubre should be able to get down the lane and get plenty of baskets inside the paint, as rim protection isn’t a strength of this
Portland team that’s allowing opponents to shoot 54.5% on 2-pointers (27th in the NBA). The Warriors are 4-0 against the spread in their last four games on a Thursday (Manila).
Draymond Green will flummox Portland’s defense with his playmaking and take advantage of Enes Kanter’s non-existent defense to set his teammates up for open looks on pick-and-rolls and cuts to the basket. Golden State wins this game, 127-122.