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Blazers Begin Tough Three-Game Stretch at Utah

Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers are 4.5-point underdogs in NBA betting odds for their game Wednesday night against the Utah Jazz.

Portland (40-29 SU, 35-34 ATS) has to face three of the top four teams in the West to close out the season as it fights with the Lakers for sixth in the conference. The first test comes tonight in Utah, where the Blazers have lost eight of their last 10 meetings with the Jazz (50-19, 39-29-1).

Portland Trail Blazers vs Utah Jazz
  • Date/Time: May 12, 9:30 p.m. ET
  • Arena: Vivint Arena
  • TV Coverage: ESPN
  • Opening Odds: Jazz -4.5 | O/U 233.5 (Line History)
  • Trail Blazers vs Jazz Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

The Jazz haven’t been this short a favorite at Vivint Arena in a couple of months, dating back to a February 12 clash with the Bucks. Utah is a league-best 31-4 SU this season at home.

Portland News & Notes

The Trail Blazers may need to win two of their last three games to clinch a top-six seed in the West and avoid the play-in tournament, but it won’t be easy. After tonight’s clash in Utah, Portland will close out the campaign with games against Phoenix and Denver. Going into tonight, the Trail Blazers have yet to beat any of those teams this season, going 0-6 SU.

At least Portland comes into the week with plenty of momentum, having gone 8-1 SU and 6-3 ATS in its last nine games. Damian Lillard has keyed the Blazers’ surge, averaging 33.8 points during that nine-game span and shooting 52 percent from the field.

Lillard has been particularly lethal recently from behind the arc, including a 6-for-11 effort in Monday’s 140-129 win over Houston. CJ McCollum added six first-half treys in that game for Portland and finished with 28 points, while Norman Powell (28) and Josef Nurkic (22) also scored more than 20 in the win.

Utah News & Notes

The Jazz haven’t quite locked up the top seed in the West, but they aren’t rushing Donovan Mitchell or Mike Conley back from injury in order to do it. The team announced Tuesday that Mitchell will miss the last three games of the regular season to continue recovering from a sprained ankle suffered April 16, while Conley will sit out his ninth straight game tonight with a hamstring injury.

Utah has gone 8-5 SU in 13 games without leading scorer Mitchell and is coming off a 119-116 loss Monday at Golden State in which it trailed by 18 points before coming up just short.

Sixth man of the year candidate Jordan Clarkson sparked Utah’s fourth-quarter rally with 24 points in the final frame, but the Jazz ultimately couldn’t overcome an uncharacteristically poor shooting night from three-point range. After hitting five of its first 12 three-point attempts, Utah was just 3-for-21 from deep in the second and third quarters.

Betting Pick: Jazz -2.5

As much as Portland needs this game, the Jazz are still playing for playoff positioning themselves and should be able to exploit the Blazers’ 20th-ranked three-point defense.

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Shark Bites
  • Portland is 8-1 SU and 6-3 ATS in its last 9 games.
  • The OVER is 6-2 in Utah’s last 8 games.
  • Portland is 2-8 SU in its last 10 games at Utah.