Pelicans vs. Trail Blazers NBA expert prediction, pick and odds for Tuesday, April 9 (Lay it with New Orelans)

NBA betting preview, prediction and best bet for Pelicans-Trail Blazers.
Apr 3, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA;  New Orleans Pelicans guard CJ McCollum (3) reacts to a play against Orlando.
Apr 3, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Orleans Pelicans guard CJ McCollum (3) reacts to a play against Orlando. / Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The New Orleans Pelicans were able to stop the bleeding of a four-game losing streak over the weekend with a 113-105 road win over Phoenix on Sunday. It was a must-have win for the Pelicans, which are trying to play their way out of the play-in tournament over the final week of the regular season.

By virtue of the tiebreaker, New Orleans is currently tied with Phoenix for the No. 6 seed but are slotted into the No. 7 spot. The Pelicans need to take care of business against the lowly Trail Blazers Tuesday since they finish the regular season against three Western Conference play-in tournament clubs. Here’s the betting breakdown of the matchup with a best bet. 

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Pelicans vs. Trail Blazers odds, spread and total

Pelicans vs. Trail Blazers how to watch

  • Date: Tuesday, April 9 
  • Game time: 10 p.m. EST
  • Venue: Moda Center
  • How to watch (TV): Bally Sports
  • Pelicans record: 46-32
  • Trail Blazers record: 21-57

Pelicans vs. Trail Blazers injury report

New Orleans Pelicans

  • Brandon Ingram (knee): out
  • Naji Marshall (shoulder): doubtful

Portland Trail Blazers

  • Ibou Badji (back): questionable
  • Malcolm Brogdon (elbow): out
  • Toumani Camara (rib): out
  • Jerami Grant (hamstring): doubtful
  • Shaedon Sharpe (abdominal): out
  • Anfernee Simons (knee): out
  • Matisse Thybulle (ankle): out
  • Robert Williams III (knee): out 

Pelicans vs. Trail Blazers key players to watch

New Orleans Pelicans

CJ McCollum: The veteran guard is averaging 19.5 points per game but has turned up his scoring with Brandon Ingram sidelined. McCollum has gone for 30-plus points in three consecutive games and has hit 16 three-pointers over the stretch. He had 31 points, 5 assists and 4 rebounds in Sunday’s win over the Suns. 

Portland Trail Blazers

Dalano Banton: Portland’s been plagued by injuries to its top scorers and Banton has had to carry more of the water for the Trail Blazers’ offense as the franchise limps toward the end of the regular season. Banton averaged 17.9 points per game in March and has turned in at least 20 in three of four games this month. 

Pelicans vs. Trail Blazers prediction and pick

Last week, Portland won back-to-back games against two of the fellow bottomfeeders in the NBA (Charlotte, Washington). With a step up in class on Sunday, Portland couldn’t keep up with Boston in a 124-107 defeat. 

In its last 10 games against playoff teams, Portland is 0-10 straight up and have lost by an average of 15.8 points per game. That includes a 19-point loss to New Orleans on the road March 16. Missing its top offensive threats, Portland now has the 29th offense in net rating and will face an uphill climb against a New Orleans defense that is No. 5 in net rating and gives up fewer points on the road (109.9 per game) than at home (111.1). 

New Orleans is No. 4 in opposing field goal percentage and No. 4 in road scoring. Portland is 16-21-1 ATS and has little to play for with all eyes on this summer’s NBA Draft. Meanwhile, New Orleans needs wins in the final week of the regular season, so motivation shouldn’t be an issue as a large favorite. Lay the points with the Pelicans. 

Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.