Jazz vs Trail Blazers Prediction
Utah Jazz and Portland Trail Blazers Battle It Out For Western Conference Playoff Position
The Utah Jazz will host the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night. The Utah Jazz are coming off of a tough loss to the Warriors on Monday. The Blazers are running through their opponents with a four-game win streak.
The Jazz have been the example of consistency all year, with a record of 50-19. The Trail Blazers have been up and down all year long, but still with a solid record of 40-29.
This matchup is held in Utah, where the Jazz are 31-4 at home. Both teams will be fresh and ready to go tonight, as each of their previous games were on Monday.
The Jazz Try and Maintain the 1 Seed in the West
The Utah Jazz have been playing phenomenal basketball all year long. They are coming off of a loss to a Steph Curry three with 13.4 seconds remaining in that game. They didn’t have their best player, Donovan Mitchell, to try and tie the game up.
Jordan Clarkson scored 41 points against the Warriors but shot just 16-33 from the floor. He has carried the offensive load, with Utah struggling with injuries recently. The Jazz will continue to be without star guards Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley, as they both heal before the playoffs start.
Bogdan Bogdanovic has been a consistent scorer as well, dropping 27 points on 9-21 shooting. Gobert had his almost nightly double-double. As for defense, The Jazz were able to hold Steph Curry to just 3-13 from three-point range, thanks to Royce O’neal’s excellent face-guarding defense. Quin Snyder may opt to use the same strategy against the electric Damian Lillard.
Utah has 50 wins on the year and is looking to add some more to the total, with three regular-season games remaining. They are 31-4 at home, so look for the Jazz to feel comfortable in this matchup.
Trail Blazers Can’t Be Touched As They Try To Avoid the Play In
The Trail Blazers are one of the hottest teams in the NBA right now. Winning 4 in a row, and 8-2 in their last 10, Portland has been able to play their best basketball at the right time. With an 11 point victory against the Houston Rockets on Monday night, they’ll be ready for the might Utah Jazz.
Damian Lillard recorded 34 points, 9 assists, and 6 rebounds against the Rockets. CJ McCollum and Norman Powell both poured in 28 points to propel the Trail Blazers to 140 points. Jusuf Nurkic also played very well, putting up 22 points, 6 rebounds, and 5 assists.
Carmelo Anthony and Zach Collins both sat out with injuries against the Rockets, but just Carmelo Anthony will return tonight. He has been a key part of this team during their win streak. Nassir Little had a scare against the Rockets and is considered doubtful for this contest.
If Portland is able to consistently play defense, then they could potentially make a deep run into the playoffs. They have all the fire-power on offense, but will they have the discipline to guard some of the best players in the league during the postseason?
Pick and Prediction
The Utah Jazz are -3.5 point favorites for this battle. I’m going to take the Trail Blazers at +3.5. They have won 4 in a row, and Damian Lillard will be looking to exploit the Jazz without their two all-star guards. I also think Carmelo Anthony will be wanting to perform well after missing the last game.
Damian Lillard will score 38 points and also have 7 assists. CJ McCollum will also chip in 23 points. On the other side, Jordan Clarkson will attempt to carry the Jazz by scoring 34 points, but it won’t be enough.
You can watch this game on ESPN at 9:30 P.M. Eastern time.
Pick: Trail Blazers +3.5