Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NBA. Each week, we send out questions to the most plugged-in Portland Trail Blazers fans and fans across the country. Sign up here to join Reacts.
According to the most recent SB Nation Reacts survey, 94 percent of fans had confidence in the Portland Trail Blazers as they take on the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the NBA Playoffs, down a percentage point from last week but up from 87 percent two weeks ago. The Blazers topped out at 95 percent in fan confidence over the season, on both February 18th and May 18th, while fan confidence bottomed out April 27th with 17 percent.
With the first-round of the playoffs underway, the most noticeable difference in the games has been the addition of nearly full crowds. More than 50 percent of fans around the country said the inclusion of fans has significantly improved the viewing experience, only 16 percent said it hasn’t improved the experience at all.
Recently, the Blazers expanded access to fans who are vaccinated, opening whole sections of seats for those who have their shots, and the games at home have sold out. Rip City is ready to show up and show out for their Portland Trail Blazers.
Having fans in attendance provides at least the semblance of a home-court advantage. A full 100 percent of Trail Blazers fans believe Portland would have finished the regular season with a better record had fans been in attendance all season long. Since the team was one of the last to add fans back to the in-arena experience, there is no doubt that it has had an impact in recent weeks.
With the rest of fans around the country watching at home, there is no shortage of great opening round series to enjoy. 30 percent of fans around the country believe the Phoenix Suns vs. Los Angeles Lakers series is the best of the group. The New York Knicks series against the Atlanta Hawks is the next most popular choice, with 21 percent of the vote. 11 percent of fans picked the Trail Blazers series against the Denver Nuggets. Given that the series is tied at 1-1, it seems likely that prediction may come true. However, the Blazers have home court advantage in the series, and the team is headed home to Moda Center where there is expanded access for vaccinated fans. Expect the next game to have a different tone — one that could potentially decide the series. Plus, who doubts that Damian Lillard is entertaining when he makes a three all the way from Scappoose?
Similarly, 26 percent of fans believe the Suns best display the characteristics of a successful team. Only four percent picked the Trail Blazers.
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