Portland Trail Blazers’ guards Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum will try to keep up the scoring place with the visiting Brooklyn Nets. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire)
- High scoring offenses clash when the Brooklyn Nets visit the Portland Trail Blazers
- Kyrie Irving (personal) and Kevin Durant (hamstring) are out for this game
- Get the latest Nets vs Trail Blazers odds, betting preview and a pick below
Two teams that can absolutely fill it up collide in Portland Tuesday night, as the Trail Blazers host the Brooklyn Nets.
Brooklyn finally felt a loss when Orlando toppled them Friday, but they bounced back quickly with a thrashing of the Wizards Sunday. Portland, meanwhile, is trying to bounce back from an off-night, watching their 3-game win streak end in a blowout to the Mavericks.
In what has become a regular occurrence for the Nets, they’ll be star-short Tuesday. Along with Kevin Durant, who’s been out for an extended period, it was announced Monday that Kyrie Irving would miss this three game trip for personal reasons. That’s likely why they’re a 4.5-point road underdog in this one.
Nets vs Trail Blazers Odds
|Brooklyn Nets||+4.5 (-106)||+166||Ov 236 (-110)|
|Portland Trail Blazers||-4.5 (-114)||-198||Un 236 (-110)|
Odds taken on Mar 22 at FanDuel
Unleash the Beard
What a luxury Steve Nash has with three mega stars on his roster. Even though the trio of James Harden, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant have played together in just six games all year, BK is battling at the top of the East with the Philadelphia 76ers.
Kyrie Irving will miss the Nets’ upcoming three-game road trip to tend to a family matter. pic.twitter.com/6AjI4ixEYa
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) March 22, 2021
Harden and Irving have taken control of the scoring burden during this 15-win run in 17 games without Durant. Harden has led the team nine times, Irving eight.
With Irving and Durant both out Tuesday, Nash can unleash Harden as the three-time scoring beast he was in Houston before changing roles to a super-charged assist man.
#NBA | Indiana Pacers 115-124 Brooklyn Nets
🔥 James Harden
🏀 40 sayı
🅰️ 15 asist
🙌 10 ribaund
— mackolik (@mackolik) March 18, 2021
The last time Harden was flying solo superstar was three game ago against Indiana, where he dropped a 40-bomb against the Pacers. These days, he’s still dropping a crisp 25.3 points, a league-leading 11.2 assists and 8.0 rebounds.
The Beard has feasted on the road, where his shooting splits are dynamite: in 18 games, he’s shooting 51.6% from the field (47% overall) and 44.5% from three-point range (36.7% overall).
BLAKE GRIFFIN❗️SLAM DUNK❗️ pic.twitter.com/6hbXShx2sx
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) March 22, 2021
This might be a chance for buyout Blake Griffin to make his mark with his new team. He made his Nets debut against the Wizards, and shot 1-for-2 in 15 minutes, though it was a dunk — something he hadn’t done all season.
Dynamic Blazers’ Backcourt
Even with their last-game clunker, Portland has been on a nice 7-3 run in their last 10 games, and it’s helped them into a tie for fifth in the West with the Nuggets. If the LeBron James injury is as long as expected, Portland does have a shot at climbing into the top-4. They trail the 4th-place Clippers by 1.5 games, and 3rd-place Lakers by 2.5 games.
“CJ MCCOLLUM. WELCOME BACK, WELCOME BACK!” 🔥 pic.twitter.com/N5HEPfbPRC
— NBA TV (@NBATV) March 20, 2021
The good news is that Damian Lillard doesn’t need to be a one-man band, as CJ McCollum has returned from a foot injury. He’s potted double-digits in all games, looking pre-injury CJ in the first of their two games against the Mavericks this week, dropping 32, with four rebounds and four dimes. He also dropped seven money balls in 13 attempts.
Carmelo Anthony becomes the 11th player in NBA history to reach 27,000 career points! pic.twitter.com/bXBupFsn9Q
— NBA (@NBA) March 20, 2021
It’s also been a nice year for Carmelo Anthony, who just keep getting buckets as one of the legit professional scorers the NBA has ever seen. He’s averaging 17 points a game for the month of March, which includes a 39.6% mark from three-point range.
And you should expect Lillard to bounce back to his MVP form after his 19-point blip: that’s his lowest output in 24 games, when he had 19 points on February 1 in a loss to Milwaukee. He’s averaging 31.8 points and 6. assists in March.
What’s the Best Bet?
Brooklyn hangs its hat on being unstoppable on offense, where they lead the NBA in scoring at over 120 a night. They’re first in field goal shooting (50%), second in three-point shooting (39.9%) and sixth in assists. Portland is no slouch either, as they’re a top-10 squad in scoring and three-point shooting.
2021 NBA Eastern and Western Conference Odds Tracker
Both teams are also dreadful on defense — both rank in the bottom five in points allowed per game, both giving up over 115 a contest.
The over looks good for this one, but don’t be afraid to take Brooklyn and the points. While I expect Portland will do enough to win, Harden alone should keep the visitors close.
The pick: OVER 236 points (-110) & Nets +4.5 (-106)
Having worked in and around sports since 1997, Eric is truly a knowledgeable expert. The two-time journalism grad specializes in all things NBA and NFL. From TSN.ca to CTV’s Olympic Broadcast Consortium, Eric’s work has appeared in local and national publications alike.