Each team has something to prove when the Los Angeles Clippers visit the Portland Trail Blazers at 10:30 p.m. ET Tuesday at the Moda Center in Portland, Oregon. The Clippers (12-9) are dealing with injuries to their stars, while the Trail Blazers’ star is also dealing with his own injuries.
The Trail Blazers (11-9) are favored by 3.5 points with an over/under of 211.5 points. That has flipped from an opening of Portland -2 and 216 points. The Trail Blazers’ moneyline is -150, while the Clippers’ is +130.
Clippers look to weather the storm
Neither Kawhi Leonard (ankle) nor Paul George (hamstring; out till early December) are available for this Western Conference matchup. Luke Kennard (calf; out till early December) and John Wall (rest) are also out. The Leonard news is likely why there was a shift in the lines.
The Clippers are still looking for their offense. They play at a much slower pace than most teams in the league. They rank last in scoring at 106.4 points per game but have decent efficiency.
The Clippers convert 47.8% of field goal attempts, which is eighth, and 35.7% of 3-point attempts, which ranks 15th. They are only making 73.4% of free throw attempts, though, which is 25th.
Defensively they are second in the league at holding teams to 106.8 points per game. The efficiency is there, too, as teams only make 44.5% of field goal attempts (second) and 33.3% of 3-pointers (fourth).
Of healthy players, Marcus Morris Sr. is the top scorer at 14.6 points per game, with Norman Powell behind him at 14.0 points per game. Reggie Jackson (11.9 ppg) and Ivica Zubac (10.5, 11.6 rebounds per game) also average double figures.
Portland hopes to get back on track
Damian Lillard is out until early December with a calf injury, and so are teammates Keon Johnson and Gary Payton II. The offense is still finding its footing.
The Trail Blazers are 23rd in scoring 109.7 points per game, also playing at a slower pace. They make 46.6% of field goal attempts, ranking 17th, and an excellent 37.6% of 3-pointers, which ranks sixth.
Defensively they allow 110.3 points per game, ranking ninth, but aren’t as efficient. Teams convert 47% of field goal attempts, ranking 19th, and 35.7% of 3-pointers, ranking 16th.
There are higher upside players available for Portland in Lillard’s absence. Anfernee Simons is the top leading scorer available at 23.2 points per game, and Jerami Grant averages 21.5 points per game. Jusuf Nurkic is averaging 14.6 points and a team-best 10.0 rebounds per game.
The Trail Blazers have managed to lose five of their last six games.
Clippers/Trail Blazers Betting Prediction
The Clippers are 8-2 against the spread in the last ten meetings, and the under is 6-2 in the last eight played in Portland. The public is split with 51% on the Clippers.
We like the Blazers -2.
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