The Portland Trail Blazers and Golden State Warriors will do it all over again on Sunday night at the Chase Center. The Blazers and Warriors squared off on Friday night, and it was another reminder of how much Golden State misses Klay Thompson. Steph Curry may not be playing at peak performance right now, but something is certainly amiss without the other splash brother on the floor.
He is currently walking around with a walking boot and rehabbing from his Achilles injury. Kevin Durant missed all of last season, and is playing well in his first action since going down against the Raptors in the NBA Finals. The Brooklyn Nets knew when they signed him that Durant was not going to be available in 2019. Their patience is paying off and Durant is balling out in New York.
The Warriors got Draymond Green back on Friday night and that didn’t go too well. He might need a game or two to shake off the rust, so one bad game isn’t any reason to worry about Draymond. He wasn’t much of a factor on both ends of the floor. Green didn’t score a point through 18 minutes, with 4 rebounds and 4 assists the highlight of his night. I’m sure he will play better on Sunday in the rematch against the Blazers.
Portland looked great in that one, as they responded well following a 128-105 loss against the LA Clippers on Wednesday. The Clippers hit the Blazers with an uppercut in that one. The Blazers were coming off a big 115-107 win over the Lakers preceding that poor outing against the Clippers. They certainly felt a bit too comfortable going back to the Staples Center, where the Clippers proceeded to beat them easily.
The key for the Blazers is going to be exactly that on Sunday. If they feel too comfortable going back to the Chase Center after beating up on this team just a couple of days ago, then the door is going to be open for the Warriors to respond with a win to close out the weekend this evening. Draymond must step up and contribute if that’s going to be the case. Head below for our free Trail Blazers vs. Warriors pick for January 3, 2021.
Portland Trail Blazers vs. Golden State Warriors NBA Betting Odds:
Portland Trail Blazers vs. Golden State Warriors Prediction:
When the Trail Blazers are interested in playing, they’re going to be tough for any team in the NBA to beat. Whether they can win a seven-game series against the Lakers is very questionable, but getting to the Western Conference Finals isn’t outlandish by any means. They have multiple weapons to throw at a defense. The Warriors discovered that on Friday night. The Blazers had three players score at least 18 points.
Dame led the way for the Blazers with 34 points, while the underappreciated CJ McCollum netted 28 points. Carmelo Anthony chipped in with 18 points, and has shown to be useful as a 36-year-old late in his career. The Blazers are ninth in the NBA with 114.2 points scored a game. That’s just about the same as last season, so no surprises for the Blazers. They were able to exploit a bad Golden State defense on Friday night.
The Warriors have been paper thin defensively, and the only team they’ve contained is the Detroit Pistons. And they didn’t really contain the Pistons in that game, as they scored 106 in a 116-106 win for the Warriors. In their four other games in the 2020-21 campaign, the Warriors were slapped for 128.5 points per game. Every team, besides the Pistons, have scored at least 123 points on the Warriors.
If Draymond doesn’t get his stroke going offensively, he has to get back to his MO of playing lockdown defense or the Warriors will continue to be in trouble. All things considered, the Warriors’ offense has been mediocre, with an average of 108.2 points scored for 21st in the league. There has to be somebody to take pressure off Steph, but Andrew Wiggins is far too inconsistent to be that guy, and Klay Thompson is walking in a boot. If the Trail Blazers bring the same form as they did on Friday night to the Chase Center tonight, then I see around a 10 to 15 points win to cover.