NBA Betting: Atlanta Hawks vs Portland Trail Blazers
- Updated: March 5, 2014
The Atlanta Hawks are a team that is trying to avoid fading in the Eastern Conference playoff race, but it is very hard for them to keep their head above water when they have so much uncertainty on the front line. On Wednesday night they take the floor against the team that has become a little more stable up front when they visit the Portland Trail Blazers in NBA betting action that is set to get underway at 10:35 PM ET at the Moda Center in Portland.
Atlanta is still clinging to the eighth and final playoff spot in the East, with a straight up record of 26-32, and they are winning at about the same rate against the basketball pointspread (27-30-1). They are only percentage points behind the Charlotte Bobcats and lead their nearest pursuer, the Detroit Pistons, by three games. VietBet customers are aware that it is only the overall ineptitude in the conference that prevents Atlanta from being a non-playoff team.
Portland is officially in fifth place in the Western Conference; the Blazers are tied with the Houston Rockets for the third-best record in the West, at 41-19 straight up, but their seeding would be #5 because the Los Angeles Clippers will go into the playoffs as a division champion. Yes, it’s very hard to explain. The Blazers have managed to be profitable for their supporters in basketball betting, with a 32-28 record versus the number.
A nice piece of news for Portland is the fact that LaMarcus Aldridge is progressing nicely as he’s coming back from a groin injury. Aldridge has played in two games upon his return from the lineup, scoring 16 points against Denver, then following that up with 21 against the Los Angeles Lakers. When he went out with his injury he was averaging just shy of 37 minutes per game, and he was the first starter for the Blazers to have missed a game due to injury. Obviously Portland has been fortunate in this regard.
The team ran off a four-game winning streak prior to Aldridge’s return, and had been slowing the pace down quite a bit; in fact, the five-game stretch from February 21 through March 1 marked the first time in’s November that the Blazers had held back-to-back opponents under 100 points, and as of this moment, Portland has played six consecutive games under the total that has been established in the NBA betting lines.
They had also held for straight opponents below 40% from the field, but they were not able to contain the Lakers on Monday, as Los Angeles shot 45.7% and turned back the Blazers on their own home floor 107-106.
Atlanta’s problems are well-known to be VietBet customers by now. The Hawks have lost eleven of their last 12 games, and during some of this period of time, Paul Millsap, their only remaining effective big man, sat out with a knee contusion. It is questionable as to whether he can see action against Portland. The Hawks had already lost Al Horford, their All-Star center, for the rest of the season. In the last dozen games, Atlanta is 1-10-1 against the basketball odds, and in rather stark contrast to the Blazers, the Hawks have played their last seven games OVER the total as it is posted in the NBA betting lines.
Atlanta reached out and signed Mike Muscala to help address its issues up front. Muscala, a second-round draft pick in 2013, is a former standout at Bucknell University, and was playing in Spain when the Hawks came along and bought out his contract. He played 19 minutes against the Phoenix Suns on Sunday in his NBA debut. If Millsap is not available, Muscala would have his work cut out for himself dealing with Aldridge, something that should not be lost on people making their pro basketball picks. .
Sunday’s loss at Phoenix was the second consecutive game, by the way, where the Hawks had shot 50% or better from the field. They have now tallied over 100 points for five consecutive games. Reaching the 100 -mark for the Blazers is nothing new, and they have now done so in eight straight contests.
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