The Detroit Pistons are featured in one of three games on the NBA slate tonight, with the other two squaring off under the bright lights of national television on TNT. The first matchup pits a Golden State Warriors team that seems to be righting the ship against a suddenly foundering Dallas Mavericks squad. In the nightcap, the perma-slightly disappointing Los Angeles Clippers are playing one of the season’s cutest stories, a completely functional Portland Trail Blazers team. It’s odd as everything you hear about the Blazers is positive, including the breakout start of former Piston Jerami Grant, but Portland is just two games above .500, which is a very Blazers-y spot in the standings.
Golden State Warriors vs. Dallas Mavericks
When: 7:30 p.m. ET
Where: American Airlines Center, Dallas, Texas
Odds: Mavericks +1.5
Los Angeles Clippers vs. Portland Trail Blazers
When: 10 p.m. ET
Where: Moda Center, Portland, Oregon
Odds: Clippers +3.5
Golden State Warriors (11-10)
Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Andrew Wiggins, Draymond Green, Kevon Looney
Dallas Mavericks (9-10)
Luka Doncic, Spencer Dinwiddie, Reggie Bullock, Dorian Finney-Smith, Dwight Powell
Los Angeles Clippers (12-9)
Reggie Jackson, Terance Mann, Amir Coffey, Marcus Morris, Ivica Zubac
Portland Trail Blazers (11-9)
Anfernee Simons, Josh Hart, Justise Winslow, Jerami Grant, Jusuf Nurkic
I’m keeping it simple this week and focusing strictly on the game lines available on DraftKings. This feels like a narrative-builder in separate directions for the Mavs and the Warriors. I think the Warriors are gonna win this one going away, and all of those murmurs wondering how happy Luka is really are going to start bubbling up to the surface and become an official talking point. At the same time, tonight feels like a night where people will be a little bolder in proclaiming that the Warriors are “back.”
Game two sees the Clippers giving Portland just 3.5 points in the Moda Center. Sure, the Blazers are without Damian Lillard, but the Clippers, and stop me if you’ve heard this one before, are without Kawhi Leonard, oh, as well as Paul George, Luke Kennard and John Wall. The Blazers have lost five-of-six, but against the Nets twice, the Jazz, Bucks and Cavs. I just don’t see how the Clippers are going to generate enough offense against even a mediocre Portland squad. Give me the Blazers.
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