The Cleveland Cavaliers are on a 7-1 start at home and look to continue their offensive showing in a match-up against the Portland Trail Blazers.
Who: Portland Trail Blazers (10-7) at Cleveland Cavaliers (11-6)
Where: Cleveland, Ohio - Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse
When: 7:00 p.m. EST
TV: Bally Sports Ohio, Bally Sports+, NBA League Pass
Opposing blog: Blazers Edge
Cavs’ expected starting lineup: Darius Garland / Donovan Mitchell / Lamar Stevens / Evan Mobley / Jarrett Allen
Cavs’ injury report: Dean Wade (PROBABLE- left knee), Kevin Love (QUESTIONABLE - thumb), Ricky Rubio (OUT - ACL), Caris LeVert (OUT - ankle), Isaiah Mobley (OUT - G League Assignment), Mamadi Diakite (OUT - G League Assignment)
Trail Blazers’ expected starting lineup: Shaedon Sharpe / Anfernee Simons / Josh Hart / Jerami Grant / Jusuf Nurkic
Trail Blazers’ injury report: Damian Lillard (OUT - calf), Josh Hart (PROBABLE - ankle), Keon Johnson (OUT - hip), Gary Payton II (OUT - abdomen), Greg Brown III (OUT - G League Assignment)
What to watch for
With the addition of Donovan Mitchell to the core of Darius Garland, Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley, the Cavs currently run pick-and-rolls at the second-highest rate in the league, sitting in the 96.6 percentile. Scoring 23.5 points per game using the pick and roll, the highest average in the league, the Cavs can use this play at their will to score points against a Trail Blazers team that surrenders an average of 49.3 points in the paint.
Limiting Portland’s offense
Portland, missing their leading scorer in Damian Lillard (26.3 points per game), has stayed afloat due to Anfernee Simons’ 22.9 points per game. Portland is a decent 6-3 in road games and will enter Wednesday’s game 5th in the NBA in road three-point percentage (38.0%) and 6th in road free throw percentage (75.1%) while shooting the sixth-highest free throw attempts (25.0) per game. Meanwhile, the Cavs rank in the bottom half of the league allowing teams to convert 35.8% of their three-point attempts and give up nearly 24 free throw attempts per game.
Portland’s offensive possessions end in a turnover on 16.2% of their possessions, the sixth-highest in the NBA. On top of that, Portland also surrenders 20.1 points per game off turnovers and 16.2 points per game on fast break opportunities. These extra possessions and scoring opportunities from the Trail Blazers 15.9 turnovers per game could easily fuel the combo of Garland and Mitchell that are averaging a combined 61.8 points in their last five home games.