NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, March 27th (All times Eastern)
Brooklyn Nets (41-29) at Portland Trail Blazers (33-37), 10:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Brooklyn Nets already punched their ticket to the postseason, while the Portland Trail Blazers are still fighting for a playoff spot.
The two teams will meet Wednesday night in the Rose City.
Brooklyn is 3-1 on an eight-game road trip and squeezed past the Phoenix Suns, 102-100, on Sunday. Brook Lopez scored 21 points and Deron Williams recorded a double-double with 20 points and 11 assists for the Nets, who have won seven of their last 10 games and sit fourth in the East -- 2 1/2 games ahead of both Chicago and Atlanta.
"We got a lot of points off the bench tonight and that's just how it has to be sometimes to get the wins. I said earlier teams like this sometimes are the tough teams to beat," Nets forward Kris Humphries said.
Humphries had a season-high 17 points and eight rebounds, while C.J. Watson scored 14 points off the bench to help Brooklyn rebound from a previous loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday.
The Nets, who sport an 18-3 mark when scoring 100-plus points, are only 2 1/2 games behind the New York Knicks for Atlantic Division supremacy and own a 19-15 record on the road. The Nets will also visit Denver, Utah and Cleveland on this lengthy trek, and last won 20 road games in 2005-06.
Portland is back home for two games and went 2-3 on a recent road trip.
The Trail Blazers capped the journey with Sunday's 103-83 loss at the hands of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Rookie Damian Lillard had a team-high 19 points, while Nicolas Batum registered 13 points, eight rebounds and eight assists for the Trail Blazers, who had won two in a row.
"I thought it was a good effort against arguably the best team in the West," said Blazers coach Terry Stotts. "It was our fifth game in seven nights and we just didn't have it at the end. I don't think the final score is indicative of how the game went, but my hat's off to them."
LaMarcus Aldridge had 10 points and 12 rebounds, and is listed as probable for Wednesday's game with an illness.
Portland will also host the Utah Jazz on the short homestand and is 22-11 at the Rose Garden this season. The Blazers are 2 1/2 games off the eighth and final postseason spot in the Western Conference.
The Blazers lost to Brooklyn 98-85 on Nov. 25 this season, but are 11-4 in the past 15 matchups between the teams. The Nets have lost four in a row and 22 of the last 25 trips to the Pacific Northwest.
03/27 10:34:41 ET