The second half of the NBA season is underway, some teams will be trying to clinch one of the final playoffs spots, while others will be trying to improve their current seeding for a chance at a favorable matchup in the first round of the playoffs.
On Friday, the Golden State Warriors will be trying to continue their historic run and stay ahead of the pace set by the 1995/1996 Chicago Bulls when they take on the Portland Trailblazers at the Rose Garden in Portland, Oregon. The game is scheduled to start at 10 PM. ET.
The Warriors entered the All-Star break with a 48-4 record, which is the best in league history. The defending NBA champions have had their way with most of their opponents this season, and feel they have a chance to break the 72 win mark set by the Bulls.
Golden State will kick off the start of the second half of the season with a matchup against the Portland Trailblazers, who went into the All-Star weekend on a hot streak of their own, winning nine of their last 11 games.
Portland’s run started after the return of Damian Lillard, who missed some time while recovering from an injury.
In the first meeting between the two teams, the Golden State Warriors defeated the Trailblazers by 20 points at the Oracle Arena, at the time, the Blazers were 15-24, and had lost three of their previous four games.
This time around, the Blazers will be trying to take advantage of playing in front of their home crowd and find a way to get past the Warriors.
Damian Lillard, who wasn’t selected to play in the All-Star game despite averaging 24.3 points and 7.3 assists per game, will need to do a better job defending Steph Curry, who finished the first game with 26 points and 9 assists.
The Blazers will also need to do a better job on Klay Thompson, who finished with 36 points, and Draymond Green, who had a triple double in the game.
Like the Trailblazers, the Warriors also finished the first half of the season on a tear, winning 11 consecutive games, which included wins against the Cleveland Cavaliers, who they defeated for the NBA championship last season, the San Antonio Spurs, and the Oklahoma City Thunder, who are considered their biggest threats in the playoffs.
Last season, the Warriors swept the Blazers in their three meetings which included two wins at the Rose Garden, so they will be going into this game with a lot of confidence. As previously mentioned, the Warriors are on a historic run this season. But, their defense has been spotty lately, and they are allowing opponents to score an average of 103 points per game, which is 20th in the league, and off their pace from last year when they had one of the best defenses in the NBA.
Due to the effectiveness of Golden State’s offense, their defense hasn’t cost them too much, but it could be a problem if they can’t get their shots to fall on offense in this game.
Warriors vs Blazers Betting Lines
BetOnline.ag has the Warriors favored to win this game by 9 points. The over/under on total points scored is 220 points. Check out our full BetOnline.ag review to learn more about our top rated sportsbook.
The Warriors don’t dominate opponents on the road the way they do at home, but I still feel they have more than enough firepower to cover the nine point spread. The over on the totals is also very appealing in this game because I expect it to be a high scoring affair.
Play: Golden State -9 @ BetOnline.ag