San Antonio Spurs vs Portland Trail Blazers 12/2/21: Starting Lineups, Matchup Preview, Betting Odds, Live Stream

San Antonio Spurs vs. Portland Trail Blazers Matchup Preview (12/2/21)

The Dejounte Murray-led San Antonio Spurs will head to the northwest to meet the Portland Trail Blazers for a Western Conference showdown between two struggling, injury-riddled teams. Portland has had some unfortunate injuries recently to Norman Powell and Damian Lillard. Those are two of the top three scorers for the Blazers, and without them, I would expect them to drop some games at a higher rate than usual. While they were able to beat the Detroit Pistons at home comfortably, I would not assign any positive meaning to that because the Pistons are just terrible on both ends of the floor. The Spurs have a solid enough squad to be competitive in a game like this and may surprise the Blazers. The outcome of this game will be completely about which team is hotter on offense because neither team plays sufficient defense to stop one another truly.

San Antonio Spurs vs. Portland Trail Blazers Betting Odds

As of the time this article was published, odds had not been made public. I will still analyze the potential outcomes of the game below but use your discretion as the line could be different than what is anticipated due to several reasons, including injuries or rotation changes.

Due to the injuries to Lillard and Powell, I would generally be all over the Spurs in this game. Surprisingly, though, the Trail Blazers have a 10-1 record at home, and their only home loss was against the Sacramento Kings in the first game of the season. For whatever reason, this team wins games at home, and a good portion of the games aren’t very close. I like the Spurs at +7 or better. Anything tighter than that, and I would stay off this game completely unless you have a strong conviction about it.

The more attractive bet to me, depending on the line, is the over. Both of these teams rank very low on the defensive end, so I would expect a back-and-forth game with many good looks for both teams. The point total may come out a little lower than usual due to Powell and Lillard being unavailable. However, Anfernee Simons and C.J. McCollum can still fill it up for the Blazers, especially on a bottom ten Spurs defense. Additionally, the Trail Blazers rank dead-last in opponent eFG% (effective field goal percentage), so even though San Antonio is not a very good offensive team, I could see it getting hot at times.

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TV Schedule

Date: 12/2/21
Time: 10:00 PM ET
Arena: Moda Center – Portland, OR
Channel: NBA TV

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San Antonio Spurs Starting Lineup

PG: Dejounte Murray
SG: Derrick White
SF: Keita Bates-Diop
PF: Keldon Johnson
C: Jakob Poeltl

San Antonio Spurs Analysis

There is little doubt that the San Antonio Spurs are in a rebuilding mode this season. However, they still have secured some solid wins, including against the Milwaukee Bucks, Washington Wizards, and Boston Celtics. Still, there is not one, or even a few, diagnosable problems with the Spurs: they are just not a good team. The wild card factor for San Antonio is Dejounte Murray. Murray can fill up the stat sheet and lead the Spurs to a win on any given night, but he also needs to get help at the right times. The fact that sharpshooter Doug McDermott may not play due to a knee injury does not help the cause.

Portland Trail Blazers Starting Lineup

PG: Anfernee Simons
SG: C.J. McCollum
SF: Tony Snell
PF: Robert Covington
C: Jusuf Nurkic

Portland Trail Blazers Analysis

Portland has to find an identity if it wants to make the playoffs and have any chance of winning a series. The Trail Blazers seemed to be shifting to a more defensive-centric team after hiring former Pistons legend Chauncey Billups, who was on one of the greatest defensive teams ever. That methodology did not prove to be true, as the Blazers are every bit as bad on defense as they were with Terry Stotts at the helm. Portland ranks 24th in opponent points per game, 29th in defensive efficiency, and dead-last in opponent eFG% (opponent effective field goal percentage.) Another issue that Portland has to deal with for at least the next game is the quad injury to Norman Powell. Powell has had a terrific season, averaging just shy of 17 points per game on an unbelievable 50.5/44.4/81.2 shooting split. Powell’s shooting efficiency and slashing ability are vastly underrated and play a much more crucial role for Portland than most think. While Powell is out, the Trail Blazers will be holding on for dear life.

San Antonio Spurs vs. Portland Trail Blazers Daily Fantasy Picks

Dejounte Murray has blossomed from a raw prospect to a potential future All-Star in the span of just a few years. Murray averages 19.1 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 8.1 assists, which is a substantial increase in all statistical categories year over year. Murray is a threat on any given night to drop a triple-double, especially with the lack of substantial offensive talent around him. This matchup is particularly beneficial for Murray as the Trail Blazers are a lousy defensive team, particularly against opposing guards.

While Jusuf Nurkic has had an average season by all accounts, he has been on fire recently, scoring 24 points and 28 points in two of his past four games. In those games, he piled on ten rebounds and 17 rebounds, respectively. Additionally, he has had at least five assists in two of his past four games, proving that he can get points in DFS outside of the usual areas for centers, save his old teammate, Nikola Jokic. Nurkic will not always be a terrific value play, as he can put up some stinkers; however, if you can choose a game where he may be at an advantage, that could make all the difference in winning money or not.

Andrew has watched sports since as young as he can remember and was fortunate enough to play college basketball. As a kid, he would sneak his Space Jam Michael Jordan jersey into his pre-school so he could wear it every day. Mom was not a happy camper when she found out.

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