Playoff Position At Stake Wednesday Night In Salt Lake City

by Casey Holdahl
Follow @chold

The Trail Blazers, currently in fifth in the standings, have three games left to play in their 2020-21 regular season. They will need to win two of those in order to guarantee a spot in the postseason, and against some of the best teams in the Western Conference.

Portland begins a back-to-back versus the teams sitting at first and second in the West that will all but decide whether they finish outside of the play in tournament when they face the Utah Jazz Wednesday night at Vivint Arena. Tipoff is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.

SERIES HISTORY

ALL TIME: Jazz lead, 106-88
PORTLAND HOME: Trail Blazers lead, 65-32
UTAH HOME: Jazz lead, 74-23
LAST PORTLAND WIN: 124-107, 2/1/20 (Portland)
LAST UTAH WIN: 122-103, 4/8/21 (Utah)
CURRENT WIN STREAK: Three (Utah)

SERIES NOTES

• The Trail Blazers May 12 game against the Jazz will bring the season series between the two teams to a close. Utah leads the series, 2-0.

HISTORIC SHOOTING: The Jazz and Trail Blazers average the most made three pointers per game, at 16.8 and 15.7 respectively. The Jazz are on pace to set an NBA per-game record, while the Trail Blazers would record the third-highest average in league history.

LAST GAME: Utah won the last matchup between the two teams, 122-103, on April 8 in Salt Lake City. Damian Lillard led Portland with 23 points (8-21 FG, 3-12 3-PT, 4-6 FT), five rebounds and six assists. Donovan Mitchell led Utah with 37 points (14-25 FG, 1-8 3-PT, 8-8 FT), five rebounds, four assists and one steal.

• Damian Lillard has averaged 27.3 points over 32 career games against Utah. His 873 career points against the Jazz are his highest total against any team.

• CJ McCollum finished with 19 points (8-21 FG, 3-10 3-PT), three rebounds, two assists, one steal and one block against Utah on April 8. McCollum has scored at least 20 points in four of his last six games against the Jazz.

• Norman Powell added 13 points (4-10 FG, 2-6 3-PT, 3-4 FT), five rebounds, one assist and one steal in what was his seventh game as a Trail Blazer on April 8. While with Toronto on March 19, Powell scored 17 points against Utah, a career-best against the Jazz.

• Donovan Mitchell has scored at least 20 points in six of his last seven games against the Trail Blazers. His 37 points on April 8 were a career-best against Portland.

• Rudy Gobert recorded 18 points (6-9 FG, 6-7 FT), 20 rebounds, two assists and one block against Portland on April 8. Gobert has grabbed at least 11 rebounds in each of his last five games against the Trail Blazers.

MILESTONE WATCH: Damian Lillard (265 3PM in 2020-21) is six made three pointers from breaking his own franchise record for threes in a season. Lillard made 270 three-pointers in 2019-20.

LAST THREE GAMES

Game #69 - Portland 140, Houston 129 — May 10, 2021, Moda Center, Portland

The Trail Blazers set a franchise record with 50 first quarter points, and reached 140 total points for the second time in the last four games, beating the Rockets 140-129 at Moda Center ... Portland tied an NBA record with 12 three-pointers in the first quarter ... Portland had four players score 20+ for the third time this season ... Damian Lillard led Portland with 34 points (11-20 FG, 6-11 3-PT, 6-6 FT), nine erbounds and six assists ... CJ McCollum added 28 points (8-17 FG, 6-10 3-PT, 6-8 FT), three rebounds and seven assists ... Norman Powell scored 28 points (9-17 FG, 3-8 3-PT, 7-9 FT) and had six rebounds and four assists ... Jusuf Nurkic recorded 22 points on 10-of-14 from the field (2-2 FT), six rebounds, five assists and three steals ... Derrick Jones Jr. had 11 points, three rebounds and three assists off the bench ... Kelly Olynyk led Houston with 21 points (5-12 FG, 1-2 3-PT, 10-10 FT), eight rebounds and six assists ... D.J. Augustin had a season-high 21 points.

Game #68 - Portland 124, San Antonio 102 — May 8, 2021, Moda Center, Portland

The Trail Blazers won every quarter, earning a decisive 22-point win over the Spurs Saturday night ... Portland improved to 14-0 when securing a double-digit halftime advantage ... Portland won by double-digits for the sixth time in their last seven wins ... Damian Lillard led Portland with 30 points (8-17 FG, 4-9 3-PT, 10-10 FT), four rebounds and eight assists ... CJ McCollum added 27 points (10-21 FG, 4-9 3-PT, 3-4 FT), five rebounds and two assists ... Norman Powell scored 11 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter, to go with six total rebounds and one assist ... Jusuf Nurkic finished with 17 points (8-15 FG, 1-4 FT), nine rebounds, five assists and one block ... Anfernee Simons had nine points (3-8 FG, 1-4 3-PT, 2-2 FT), six rebounds and one block in 27 minutes off the bench ... DeMar DeRozan led the Spurs with 20 points (6-15 FG, 8-8 FT), two rebounds, four assists and two steals ... Lonnie Walker added 18 points and a season-high eight boards.

Game #67 - Portland 106, Los Angeles 101 — May 7, 2021, Moda Center, Portland

The Trail Blazers secured a key playoff win over the Lakers, winning 106-101 behind 38 points from Damian Lillard ... Portland recorded 20+ assists for the 11th consecutive game ... Damian Lillard recorded his 31st game with 30+ points, good for the third most 30+ point games in the league this season ... Lillard finished with 38 points (12-18 FG, 5-9 3-PT, 9-9 FT), four rebounds, seven assists and two steals ... CJ McCollum added 21 points (7-19 FG, 2-7 3-PT, 5-6 FT), three rebounds and four assists ... Norman Powell recorded 19 points (6-18 FG, 3-8 3-PT, 4-4 FT), two rebounds and one assist, steal and block ... Jusuf Nurkic finished with 10 points on 5-of-8 shooting, to go with 13 rebounds, five assists and one steal ... Enes Kanter had 10 points and 10 rebounds off the bench ... Anthony Davis led the Lakers with 36 points (12-23 FG, 2-3 3-PT, 10-15 FT), 12 rebounds and five assists ... Alex Caruso added a season-high 18 points, six rebounds and two assists.

INJURY NOTES

Nassir Little (lower back, spasms) is questionable and Zach Collins (left ankle, stress fracture) is out for Wednesday's game at Utah.

As for the Jazz, Mike Conley (right hamstring; tightness), Donovan Mitchell (right ankle; sprain) and Juwan Morgan (right heel; soreness) are out.

BROADCAST NOTES

Wednesday’s game can be seen locally on NBC Sports Northwest. It will also air nationally on ESPN. The game can be heard on Rip City Radio 620 AM and on all of the stations of the Deschutes Brewery Trail Blazers Radio Network.

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