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Spurs vs. Trail Blazers NBA Playoff Series Gambling Prediction & Lines

San Antonio vs Portland Odds

The San Antonio Spurs and Portland Trail Blazers have survived Round 1, and now the two will face off in the Western Conference Semifinals. The two franchises have faced off in the postseason three times (San Antonio leads the series 2-1) with the 1999 Western Conference Finals being the most recent.[ad-4468020]

Odds to win the 2014 NBA championship

  • San Antonio: 4-1
  • Portland: 20-1

Odds to win the Western Conference

  • San Antonio: 8-5
  • Portland: 15-2

Round 2 Odds

  • Spurs (-400)
  • Blazers (+300)

The Spurs and Blazers have been polar opposites over the past decade (plus some) when it comes to success. San Antonio has been to 17 straight postseasons while winning four championships and making it to a fifth. Portland, on the other hand, hasn’t been out of the first round since the 1999-00 season—that is, until now.

Portland made it to Round 2 with an entertaining series against the Houston Rockets. The team averaged better than 111 points per contest in six games, and capped off the series with a walk-off three-pointer from Damian Lillard.

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San Antonio’s series was against the in-state rivaled Dallas Mavericks. The Spurs were the No. 1 seed, but Dallas did what it needed to do to force a Game 7. Luckily for Gregg Popovich (the NBA’s coach of the year), the team finally showed up in the series’ final contest, taking down Dallas 119-96.

In the battle between Portland and San Antonio, defense is going to be a major storyline. Portland has been subpar at best this season on that end of the floor, while the Spurs have been elite as usual. The question is, can San Antonio’s defense contain Portland’s offense, because we know the Blazers’ will struggle defensively against those pesky guards who can attack the rim.
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Speaking of pesky guards, the key matchup can be found at the point guard spot. Tim Duncan and LaMarcus Aldridge have been the leaders of their respective organizations for a long time, but Tony Parker and Damian Lillard are going to be the ones getting most of the attention. It’s a battle of new school versus old school, and the fact that neither are great on defense will make this battle as fun to watch as any on the floor.

If you’re looking for an honorable mention when it comes to matchups, look at shooting guard. Wesley Matthews will look to give Manu Ginobili the James Harden treatment, making life difficult and forcing bad looks.

X-factors for Portland and San Antonio are going to be Thomas Robinson and Kawhi Leonard, respectively. For Portland, Robinson showed what he’s capable of in spurts against the Rockets. His energy is infectious, but his production comes down to whether or not he’s making smart decisions. For San Antonio, you might not expect a starter to be an X-factor, but that’s exactly what Leonard is. He’s not a member of the “Big Three,” and he has the defensive ability to neutralize the attack from Lillard, Matthews and Nicolas Batum.

NBA Playoffs Series Betting Prediction

The Blazers and Spurs are both riding high after their series-clinching victories. Portland’s was in dramatic, last-second fashion, while San Antonio’s was dominant and convincing. The question is: Will one of these teams get ahead of themselves?

Chances are, we’re about to have another good series on our hands. While some fans in Portland might believe the Blazers are playing with house money, the truth is that they believe they can win. Then again, Popovich is the kind of coach who even up 30 tells his team to “win the quarter,” providing the right mindset when it comes to playing hard.

In this one, it will come down to experience, and that unequivocally favors the Spurs. The Blazers will keep it close in most of the individual games, but when it comes to the series, San Antonio should advance to the conference finals in five or six.

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