Portland at Charlotte 11-14-09

November 14, 2009

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While the Portland Trail Blazers have regrouped after a slow start, the Charlotte Bobcats have taken a step back since opening their season on a positive note. The visiting Trail Blazers look for a sixth consecutive victory while trying to hand the Bobcats a fourth straight loss Saturday night. Portland (7-3) won 86-78 at New Orleans on Friday to improve to 3-0 on a five-game road trip that concludes Monday at Atlanta. The Trail Blazers have won five in a row since losing three of five to open the season.The Trail Blazers started the trip with victories at Memphis and Minnesota, and they’re in position for their first five-game road winning streak since Dec. 14-30, 2002. Overall, Portland is 4-1 on the road after finishing 20-21 away from home last season.

Portland, averaging 99.6 points and giving up only 83.6 during its five-game winning streak, won Friday despite shooting 37.9 percent. The Blazers outrebounded the Hornets 60-40 and finished with a 22-3 advantage in second-chance points. The 6-foot-11 Aldridge, who’s averaging 16.5 points and 9.7 rebounds in his last four contests, once again provided a strong presence in the paint, especially on the offensive end where he made 10 of 19 shots.

Charlotte (3-5) lost 98-75 loss at Detroit on Friday for its third straight loss after winning three of its first five. Nazr Mohammad led the team with 13 points in 15 minutes off the bench in the latest woeful offensive performance for the Bobcats, who are last in the league with 83.5 points per game.

The Bobcats, 3-1 at home, hope to have veteran guard Raja Bell back after he missed their last contest with a sore right calf. Bell, who missed the first three games with a wrist injury, is averaging 12.3 points in four contests this season.

Each team won on its home floor to split the two-game season series in 2008-09. Portland is hot right now and the spread is a low one. Ride them while its going well. Take Portland on the road.

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Free Pick Portland -2.5

By Lawrence Tate Associate Freepick1.com Editor


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