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Dallas Mavericks vs. Portland Trail Blazers NBA Preview & Free Pick

NBA Basketball Matchup: Mavericks vs TrailBlazers

Time is running out for the Portland Trail Blazers who are hoping to grab as many wins in their few remaining games, starting with a big win over the visiting Dallas Mavericks who will play game two of a critical four-game road trip over a five-day span on Friday night.  

Date/Time: 10:30 PM ET, Friday, April 13, 2012
Venue: The Rose Garden in Portland, OR.
Broadcast:
Spread: Mavs -2
Over/Under: 191

Matchup | Preview 

Dallas meanwhile, finds itself in a three-way tie for the final playoff spot with Denver and Houston in the West. Those teams are 1 1/2 games ahead of ninth-place Utah.

The reigning champs have had a topsy turvy season and will loom to win the rubber match after losing 99-97 in overtime at home back on February 13.

Of course, the Mavs played that game without the services of center Ian Mahinmi and guard Jason Kidd.

While Portland’s Raymond Felton had a season-high 30 points and LaMarcus Aldridge hit a fadeaway jumper at the buzzer in overtime to lead the Trail Blazers to rare back-to-back wins in that one.

Aldridge finished with 25 points and hauled in 12 rebounds in that one, and scored six of the Blazers eight overtime points.  [soliloquy id=”82219″]

Dirk Nowitzki, who had a team-high 23 points and 13 rebounds for Dallas, has been solid. averaging nearly 20 points per game over his last five outings even though the Mavs have won just two of those.

In the meantime, Portland has lost two of its last three and finds itself three games under .500 and 4 1/2 games out of a playoff spot after showing a lot of promise at the beginning of the season.

To add insult to injury–literally, the Trail Blazers Aldridge will have surgery on his right hip and miss the rest of the season.

That will leave J.J. Hickson to start in his place.

Hickson did a good job his last time out, scoring 15 points and seven rebounds, but lacks the experience and will need a lot of help from reserve Jamal Crawford who had a breakout performance, netting a season-high 34 points in the Blazers 118-110 win over Golden State on Wednesday,.

Free Pick: Dallas– Without Aldridge I just don’t see how the Blazers get this done.

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