Basketball Betting — Favored Clippers Look For Momentum-Building Win Over Blazers

Unfortunately for the Portland Trail Blazers, this team that was once red-hot has now cooled off considerably as we head toward the All-Star break. On the other hand, the Los Angeles Clippers have a chance to develop some real momentum and gain some ground at the same time in a Wednesday night matchup in basketball betting action that begins at 10:35 PM Eastern time at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

At the moment, Portland is 36-16 straight up and 28-24 against the basketball pointspread. They are the third place team in the West, but hot on their heels are the Clippers, who are 36-18 straight up, with a 31-23 ledger against the NBA odds.

In the basketball betting lines that have been established on this game by the people at Bookmaker, the Clippers are solid favorites:

Los Angeles Clippers -9
Portland Trail Blazers +9

Over 218 points -110
Under 218 points -110

If the Clippers win this game tonight, there will be a difference of only seven percentage points between themselves and Portland in the Western Conference standings. It becomes further crowded with the presence of the Houston Rockets as well, who would be in a virtual tie with the Clippers in that case. It comes down to what might be the difference between having a home-court advantage in the first round of the post-season or not. The playoff race in the West is indeed very exciting.

That doesn’t compare with the excitement on the part of Clippers fans and the basketball bettors who backed them on Sunday, as they were able to go out to dinner early when Los Angeles pretty much closed things out on the Sixers after one quarter of play. There was lots of emotion in the building, as point guard Chris Paul came back to the lineup. He scored seven points and handed out eight assists, and the Clippers were incredibly focused in his presence, getting off to a 46-15 lead after just twelve minutes of play. They increased that lead to 39 at the half and 49 after three quarters. The final was 123-78, which left open a lot of talk about the possibilities.

Bookmaker customers know that this is a team that can get its offense from a lot of places. The Clippers don’t necessarily need for Paul to score a lot; obviously Blake Griffin is a big producer, but Jamal Crawford has averaged over 24 points a game in his last three outings, and usually comes off the bench. Lately he has been starting in place of JJ Redick, the three-point marksman who is sitting out with a hip injury. Don’t discount the contributions of DeAndre Jordan either; he picked up 20 rebounds against the Sixers, and is always good for some “garbage” points (and we don’t mean to denigrate him). Jordan leads the NBA in field goal percentage, so it’s not a particularly bad idea for him to have the ball in his hands.

Portland has just not gotten a handle on things lately. The Blazers have now lost seven of their last 12 games, and there have been some very spotty shooting performances along the way. One of those was last night at home against the Oklahoma City Thunder, where they hit just 37.6% of their shots, losing at home 98-95. LeMarcus Aldridge, who had been a dominant figure against the Thunder in three previous meetings, made five of his 22 shots from the field in that game. The Blazers are still the highest-scoring team in the league (107.7 PPG), but over these last dozen games, they have failed to reach 100 six times, and those basketball bettors who like to look at totals recognize that eight of those 12 games have gone “under.”

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