We head back to the NBA hardwood to check on a matchup between two teams currently on the outside looking in for the 8thseed in the Western Conference. The Portland Trailblazers will host the New Orleans Pelicans as they both shoot to sneak into the playoffs.
Game: New Orleans Pelicans (23-32, 27-25-3 ATS) at Portland Trail Blazers (25-31, 23-32-1 ATS)
When: 10:30 PM ET, Friday, February 21, 2020
Where: Moda Center at the Rose Quarter, Portland, Oregon
Current Line: New Orleans -4 Total: 235.5
TV Coverage: ESPN, TSN
The Zion Factor
The New Orleans Pelicans are led by rookie phenom Zion Williamson. They are winners of 6 of their last 10 contests but have split their last six games. They currently sit at 23-32 and are 5.5 games out of the 8th seed.
Since his NBA debut on January 22nd, Zion, a 6’6”, 284 lbs forward has scored 20 or more points in 8 of his first ten games, including the last 6. In fact, in his last 2 games before the All-Star break, Williamson has scored 31 and 32 points!
Having said all that, if the Pelicans are going to make a run at the postseason, the wins have to start coming now.
Trail Blazers vs Pelicans Full Game Highlights | Feb 11, 2019-20 NBA Season
New Orleans enters the contest relatively healthy for this point in the season. The Pelicans leaders are from a key trio including Williamson, who averages 22.1 point per game to go along with 7.5 rebounds. Brandon Ingram also puts up big numbers with 24.2 points per.
The Pelicans average 115.8 points a game, while allowing 117.3. These numbers have been better since Zion made his season debut.
Lillard Will Be Missed
The Trailblazers desperately need to pick up a win as they currently sit 4 games behind the Grizzlies for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference. They currently sit at 25-31 and are 6-4 in their last 10 contests.
The Blazers average 113.4 points per game, but will be missing a key piece to the team for this contest.
All World superstar Damian Lillard, who averages over 29 points per game, will miss this one with a groin injury. CJ McCollum and Carmelo Anthony will have to step up in a huge way to attempt to keep this offense going. This is a veteran bunch that will do whatever they can to keep this ship afloat while their superstar heals.
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