The Utah Jazz wrapped up their preseason with an 84-88 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers. That’s in the past now, though, and the Jazz are currently focusing on their regular season opening game against the Trail Blazers on Tuesday, October 25th at the Moda Center. The basketball betting odds for that match-up are yet to be determined at this sportsbook, but that doesn’t mean it’s too early to talk about it, of our own volition, without feeling compelled to do so through pressure exerted by external forces.
As a matter of fact the Jazz and the Blazers also opened their preseasons playing each other, and Utah lost on that occasion as well. However, that’s not to say that Portland completely, absolutely, and utterly dominated the Jazz. No sir, not at all. Portland completely, absolutely, and utterly dominated the Jazz with Gordon Hayward and Derrick Favors in the first game, and then Portland completely, absolutely, and utterly dominated the Jazz without Gordon Hayward and Derrick Favors, and with all the more reason. Though to be fair, the outcome of these encounters had less to do with who Utah did or did not line up, but the Blazers did – more specifically, Damian Lillard.
Names on Court
In the first game, the Portland point guard had 16 points. Lillard improved that production by 11 points in the second game, going 11 of 16 and going to the free throw line only two times, and sitting out the fourth quarter. In addition to that, Mason Plumlee had 8 points, 10 rebounds and 7 assists, while Evan Turner recorded 15 points, 7 rebounds and 2 assists coming from the bench. For the Jazz, George Hill scored 16 points and caught 6 rebounds, and Rudy Gobert contributed 15 points and 5 rebounds. Portland was ahead by 12 points heading into the final quarter. Utah got as close as 80-78 with a little more than four minutes to go, but a Jake Layman Layup (TM) and a trey by ‘Mean Marvin’ Shabazz Napier put the Jazz away for good.
Betting Fans Ready
What basketball betting fans really want to know, though, is whether the Blazers’ preseason dominance over the Jazz will translated into a season opening win on Tuesday? Let’s ask the 8-ball, shall we? All signs point to yes. I thought so, too. Granted, preseason games are more “warm-up” or “exhibition games” than anything else. And these two teams are very similar, both young and talented. But Portland is just a little bit farther ahead in the curve, which is also why they got farther than Utah last season; i.e., the playoffs, where they actually reached the Western Conference Semifinals – and lost them to the Warriors.
Sure, many basketball betting aficionados are convinced that the Jazz will be a sleeper and make the postseason themselves in 2016-17. Hayward is a very underestimated player, and Rudy Gobert has the potential to become the defensive player of the year. The problem is that head coach Quin Snyder is like a pretzel vendor desperately trying to cram one more salty treat into the Western Conference’s already-bloated snack hole. ‘Nuff said.