The Portland Trail Blazers get another crack at the Denver Nuggets after getting absolutely shellacked in their last meet up on the road, 124-95. Since then, Portland has looked significantly more comfortable at home, seeing their net rating swing from the negative to the “there’s no way they can sustain this” positive.
If Nikola Jokic plays, the Nuggets clearly present a real test. However, when missing Michael Porter Jr, Jamal Murray and Bones Hyland, the Nuggets are still fighting with the proverbial hand behind their back. Portland has struggled mightily to contain shorthanded teams all season, so a “real test” and the chance to exercise the “beating a short handed team cleanly” demons are on the table.
Thankfully, Damian Lillard (fresh off a Western Conference Player of the Week award) has looked more and more like himself: pulling up from deep from 3, getting by defenders off the bounce and generating trips to the free throw line. One could likely hope for more from his running mate, as CJ McCollum after a torrid start just hasn’t been able to really get it into gear with multiple scoreless halves in a handful of games.
Will Portland have the firepower (or the ability to stop Denver’s) to get a win and make it four straight? Join hosts Danny Marang and Brandon Sprague on the Jacked Ramsays pregame show right here and find out!