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Portland Trail Blazers vs. Sacramento Kings Gambling & NBA Handicapping Prediction

PDX vs Sacramento NBA Betting Odds

The Portland Trail Blazers and Sacramento Kings have already faced off twice during the 2013-14 NBA season, and they’re set to face off again Tuesday, Jan. 7.

Portland (26-8) at Sacramento (10-22)
Tuesday, Jan. 7 10:00 p.m. ET at Sleep Train Arena
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On the year, Portland has won the series 2-0. The team from the Pacific Northwest has won both games by an average margin of 12 points per contest, but Sacramento will look to make the third matchup a charm.

Portland

The Trail Blazers have been brilliant this season, but they’re coming off of a week that saw them go 2-2, losing twice in dramatic fashion. To the team’s credit, it did pull out a comeback win against the Oklahoma City Thunder, while also blowing out the Charlotte Bobcats; but two last-second losses to the New Orleans Pelicans and Philadelphia 76ers have brought to light that this team is indeed mortal, and it can indeed lose games in the clutch.

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If all goes according to plan, Portland won’t have to worry about performing in crunch time. It’s something it has done well almost all season, but the goal here is to win big despite being on the road.

The last time these two teams met, Rudy Gay was still with the Toronto Raptors. Additionally, Isaiah Thomas hadn’t quite broken onto the scene, and while the team knows it has to contain DeMarcus Cousins, these two could be big-time difference makers.
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Sacramento

If Portland sticks to its regular defensive schemes, look for Cousins to have a big game. The Blazers haven’t double teamed bigs all season long, instead opting to give up points down low in an effort to better defend the three-point line.

Speaking of defending the three-point line, that’s exactly what Sacramento will have to do to keep up in this one. Despite being underdogs, the Philadelphia 76ers held Portland under 100 points (the Blazers entered that game as the No. 1 scoring team in the NBA) by making them look downright awful from long range. The Kings are the second-worst team in the Association at defending the three-point line (they’re also the second-worst team in terms of points allowed), which is going to be a problem come Tuesday.

Cousins will be slated to have a big game, but if anyone else is going to join him, look for it to be Thomas. The point guard will be going up against Damian Lillard, and while he’ll be forced to expend a ton of energy on defense, the offensive end is where he’ll take advantage of a young point guard who is less focused on defensive production.

Despite having home-court advantage, look for the Blazers to bounce back following their loss. They know that sustaining success means winning the winnable games, and this qualifies as one of those contests. Expect a good showing from Portland, taking away the idea of a crunch time showing when it’s all said and done.

Prediction: Portland 107 – Sacramento 95

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