2014 NBA Playoffs
Western Conference Semifinals – Game #5
#5 Portland Trail Blazers at #1 San Antonio Spurs
Spurs Lead Best of Seven Series 3-1
AT&T Center – San Antonio, Texas
Wednesday, May 14, 2014, 9:35 pm Eastern, TV: TNT
Opening Line: San Antonio -7 1/2
Current Line: San Antonio -8 1/2
Opening Total: 208
Current Total: 209
Opening Money Line: Spurs -370 / Blazers +300
Current Money Line: Spurs -400 / Blazers +320
The Portland Trail Blazers were down 3-0 to the San Antonio Spurs going into game four of the Western Conference semifinals Monday night. Portland had lost all three previous games in the series by at least 15 points and led for a total of 67 seconds in all three games combined. The Trail Blazers avoided the sweep at home with a 103-92 win. The series switches to San Antonio for game five Wednesday night. The Spurs will advance to their third straight Western Conference Finals with a win. The Blazers can force game six Friday night in Portland with a win. No team in NBA history has ever come back from a 3-0 series deficit to win the series.
San Antonio won game one 116-92 and game two 114-97. The series shifted to Portland for game three. The result was the same as the Spurs won 118-103.
Portland took a 29-24 at the end of the first quarter Monday. In the previous three games, San Antonio had huge second quarters and took insurmountable leads into halftime. This time they only outscored Portland by 3 points, and the Blazers took a 50-48 lead into halftime. Portland used a big third quarter to take a 17 point lead into the fourth quarter. The Trail Blazers led by as many 20 in the fourth, and the Spurs never got closer than 10 points. Portland stayed alive in the series with the 11 point win. It was the first playoff win for Portland against San Antonio since 1993.
Damian Lillard scored 25 points for Portland and also added 5 assists and 4 rebounds. LaMarcus Aldridge scored 19 points and added 4 rebounds. Guard Will Barton added 17 points and 6 rebounds off the bench. Before this game Portland had only 43 bench points total. They had 26 in game four. Forward Nicolas Batum had 14 points, 14 rebounds and 8 assists for the Blazers. Center Robin Lopez had 9 points and 12 rebounds.
Tony Parker led the Spurs with 14 points. Parker has scored at least 29 points in the previous 4 San Antonio playoff games. Tim Duncan scored 12 points and added 9 rebounds. Boris Diaw scored 12 points off the bench.
Portland is coached by Terry Stotts. The Trail Blazers are 48-44 ATS this season and the total is 53-38-1 this season.
Portland is outscoring teams 107-103 this season. The Trail Blazers are #4 in scoring and #22 in points allowed. Portland is shooting 45% from the field and 37.2% from 3 point range. The Blazers are #10 in 3 point shooting. Portland leads the league in free throw shooting at 81.5% from the line. Opponents are shooting 45.1% from the field and 35.5% from 3 point range. The Blazers average 46.4 rebounds per game and opponents average 43.5 per game. Portland leads the league in rebounding but is #22 in rebounds allowed. The Blazers average 23.1 assists, 13.8 turnovers, 5.5 steals, and 4.8 blocks per game. Opponents average 20.4 assists, 12.1 turnovers, 7.8 steals and 3.7 blocks per game.
Forward LaMarcus Aldridge averages 23.2 points, 11.1 rebounds, 2.6 assists, and 1 block per game. Point guard Damian Lillard averages 20.7 points, 5.6 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game. Guard Wesley Matthews averages 16.4 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game. Forward Nicolas Batum averages 13 points, 7.5 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game. Center Robin Lopez averages 11 points, 8.5 rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game. Mo Williams, Dorrell Wright, Thomas Robinson, Will Barton, and Joel Freeland will also get significant minutes. Williams left game two with a groin injury and is questionable for game five after missing the last two games.
San Antonio is coached by Gregg Popovich, who won his third NBA coach of the year award this season. San Antonio is 49-44 ATS and the total is 52-40-1 this season.
San Antonio is outscoring teams 105-97. The Spurs are #6 in scoring and #6 in points allowed. San Antonio is shooting 48.6% from the field and 39.7% from 3 point range. The Spurs are #2 in field goal percentage and #1 in 3 point shooting. San Antonio is #4 in free throw shooting at 78.5% from the line. Opponents are shooting 44.4% from the field and 35.3% from 3 point range. The Spurs are in the top 10 in both categories. San Antonio is averaging 43.3 rebounds per game and opponents average 42.2 per game. The Spurs average 25.2 assists, 14.6 turnovers, 7.5 steals and 5.2 blocks per game. Opponents average 20.3 assists, 14 turnovers, 7.8 steals and 4.7 blocks per game.
Point guard Tony Parker averages 16.7 points, 5.7 assists, and 2.3 rebounds per game. Parker is probable with the ankle injury. Forward Tim Duncan averages 15.1 points, 9.7 rebounds, 3 assists, and 1.9 blocks per game. Forward Kawhi Leonard averages 12.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1.7 steals per game. Guard Manu Ginobili averages 12.3 points, 3 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 1 steal per game. Guard Marco Belinelli averages 11.4 assists, 2.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game. Guard Patty Mills averages 10.2 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.8 assists. Boris Diaw, Danny Green, Tiago Splitter, Cory Joseph, Jeff Ayres, and Matt Bonner will also get significant minutes.
Portland is 4-10 ATS after a straight up win of 10 points or more, 1-6 on one day rest, 1-7 against teams with winning records, overall, against Western Conference teams, and against Southwest Division teams. The underdog is 7-3 ATS in the last 10 games in this series. The over is 9-4 in the last 13 games in this series.
San Antonio is 5-1 ATS in conference semifinal games, 4-1 against teams with winning records, overall, against Western Conference teams, and against Western Conference teams, 803 against teams with winning road records, 11-5 at home, 2-5 after a straight up loss by 10 points or more, 1-4 after a straight up loss and in Wednesday games, 1-7 after allowing 100 points or more in the previous game, after failing to cover, and when the opponent scores 100 points or more in the previous game. The home team is 4-1 ATS in this series recently. The Spurs are 5-1 ATS in the last 6 games against the Blazers and 2-5 ATS in the last 7 games in San Antonio against Portland.
Portland won at home to stave off elimination in game four. However, now comes the hard part, the Blazers must now win on the road in game five. The Spurs took their foot off the gas in the last game, but I think they play with more energy in game five. I like the Spurs to close out the series, but the Blazers won’t go quietly.