The San Antonio Spurs (23-9) will take their 11-game winning streak into Portland tonight to face the Portland Trail Blazers (17-16).
The Spurs are coming off a hard-fought win over the Jazz 106-102 but will enter tonight’s game limping. Out for two weeks are Manu Ginobili and Tiago Splitter due to injury. Also, there are reports of James Anderson wanting his way out of San Antonio which, for Spurs fans and the team, hope doesn’t distract the team’s winning ways.
Portland enters tonight contest off a 103-92 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers and will be looking to end the Spurs’ hot streak.
The last time these to teams met, the Spurs walked away with a 99-83 win in San Antonio but as the Spurs and Blazers get ready to tangle, here are five things to watch for in tonight’s matchup.
- History not on San Antonio’s side. Portland has won eight of the last 10 games versus San Antonio.
- So the Spurs have difficulty reaching the century mark against the Blazers. The Blazers have not allowed the Spurs to score 100 points since 2007. A streak of 13 games.
- If the game in on the line, don’t foul Crawford. Jamal Crawford ranks third in the NBA at free-throw shooting at 94%.
- Portland can score, a lot! Portland is one of four teams in the Western Conference to have six players to average in double-figure scoring. LaMarcus Aldridge, Nicolas Batum, Jamal Crawford, Gerald Wallace, Wesley Matthews, and Raymond Felton.
- The Blazers defend the three-point line quite well. Portland allows teams to shoot 30.9% from long distance good for second in the NBA.
Matchup to watch: Tim Duncan vs. LaMarcus Aldridge. Here is how the two big men fared against each other (via nba.com) in their first meeting this season.