The Washington Wizards are on the road tonight when they head into Portland to take on the Trail Blazers. The Wizards have been poor on their travels and the NBA odds makers are giving them 15 points.

Season record (32-25-1 ATS for 56.1% ATS winners)

NBA free pick on Portland as they take on Washington in NBA action set to start at 10:00 PM ET.  This play is also backed up by Bob Harvey who sides with Portland.

Portland currently sits in sixth place in the Western Conference standings and securely ahead of ninth place Houston by 3 1.2 games with 12 games to play. Still, Portland needs to take care of business in this game and get the easy win tonight knowing that they avoid San Antonio and the Los Angeles Lakers by maintaining the sixth or higher playoff seed.

Team Backgrounds

Washington has nothing left to play for and have not showed any consistent focus in any game played in the past several weeks. They have lost 13 of the last 15 games and covered just four of them. They have allowed five opponents to shoot well over 50% from the field and nine of the to have 60 or more rebounds. Moreover, the Washington Wizards are a horrifying 1-31 in road games this season.

Portland has won three of the last four games and seven of the last 10 games. During this 10 game span they have covered eight of these games. Washington is coming off a 98-92 win over New Jersey Sunday, but head coach Flip Saunders is 3-20 ATS losing 19.0 units per one unit wagered off an upset win as a dog.

Portland sports the fourth best home record in the Western Conference at 24-10. Seven of their 12 games are at home, which certainly gives the opportunity to win the majority of them and maintain that all important sixth playoff seed.

Rankings and Stats

Portland’s offense is built from the defensive end and executing transition scoring opportunities well. The big difference in this game are the two defenses. Portland ranks eighth in scoring defense allowing 94.9 points per game and have allowed 85 points per game over their past three games. By comparison, Washington ranks 23rd ins coring defense allowing 104.1 points per game and have allowed a horrid 108.7 in road games this season. The road scoring defense ranks 29th in the NBA and is only better than the Timberwolves 109.3 points per game.

Turnovers Favor Portland

Portland is the second best ball handling team in the NBA averaging just 12.8 turnovers per game. By comparison, Washington ranks 26th in the NBA averaging 14.9 turnovers per game and averaging 15.2 turnovers per game in road tilts.

These combinations of stronger defense and far better ball handling will be a dominant reason portland will dominate this game. I see Portland leading at the half by 15 or more points.

Game Situations. Projections, and a System

The Portland Trail Blazers are 16-2 when they shoot above 45% from the field. The simulator shows a very high probability that they will shoot at least 45% from the field.

My proprietary sports handicapping database and simulator shows a high probability that Portland will win this game by 16 or more points. Supporting this graded play is a system that has produced a record of 27-6 ATS for 82% winners since 1996. Play against road dogs of 10 or more points after failing to cover four of their last five against the spread facing an opponent covering eight or more of their last 10 against the spread.

Take the Portland Trailblazers.