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Portland Trail Blazers vs Orlando Magic prediction and match preview - March 26th, 2021 | NBA Season 2020-21

Portland Trail Blazers look to grab a high playoff seed ahead of the postseason.
Portland Trail Blazers look to grab a high playoff seed ahead of the postseason.
Kunal Sethi
ANALYST
Modified 26 Mar 2021
Preview

The Portland Trail Blazers continue their 2020-21 NBA Eastern Conference road trip when they visit the Amway Center on Friday to take on the Orlando Magic.

The two rosters look quite different since the NBA trade deadline. While the Orlando Magic look to continue their rebuilding this season, the Portland Trail Blazers have bolstered their roster.

Match Details

Fixture: Portland Trail Blazers vs Orlando Magic | NBA Season 2020-21.

Date & Time: Friday, March 26th; 8:00 PM ET (Saturday, March 27th; 5:30 AM IST).

Venue: Amway Center, Orlando, FL.

Orlando Magic Preview

Orlando Magic
Orlando Magic

The Orlando Magic's fortunes have turned around in recent games. After dismantling their entire roster, they look more intent on developing a competitive team for next season.

They traded their star center Nikola Vucevic along with Al-Farouq Aminu to the Chicago Bulls for Wendell Carter Jr., Otto Porter Jr. and draft picks.

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Meanwhile, Aaron Gordon was traded to the Denver Nuggets for Gary Harris, RJ Hampton and draft picks. The Orlando Magic also traded guard Evan Fournier to the Boston Celtics for Jeff Teague and more draft picks.

The Orlando Magic PBO Jeff Weltman said about the team's busy trade deadline,

"We didn't set out on this path when the season started. We felt we could be a homecourt team. Now that I see how the season went, I feel that even more. We got punched in the nose by a historic wave of injuries. This deadline provided the opportunity for a new path to take. I'm excited to take that path. I think we've got great things ahead of us."

Key Player - Dwayne Bacon

Dwayne Bacon and Aaron Gordon
Dwayne Bacon and Aaron Gordon
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Unfortunately for the Orlando Magic, the only player left on their active roster who is even close to scoring double digits is Dwayne Bacon.

He is averaging 9.9 points per game while playing 25 minutes on the floor. The rest of their roster is plagued by injury.

Eight players are either ruled out or listed questionable, including several new players acquired on trade deadline day.

Orlando Magic Predicted Lineup

Point Guard - Michael Carter-Williams | Shooting Guard - Dwyane Bacon | Small Forward - James Ennis III | Power Forward - Chuma Okeke | Center - Khem Birch.

Portland Trail Blazers Preview

Portland Trail Blazers
Portland Trail Blazers

The Portland Trail Blazers are fancying their chances of a deep playoff run. With a 26-18 record on the season, they are tied for fifth in the Western Conference, along with the Denver Nuggets.

The Blazers have won four of their last six games and should grab an easy victory over the Orlando Magic. Four of their next five games are against bottom-table lottery teams. So they could further climb up the conference standings to possibly take home-court advantage in the playoffs.

The Portland Trail Blazers recently had CJ McCollum back for the first time in nearly two months. Meanwhile, big man Jusuf Nurkic is expected to return in a week or so as well.

The Trail Blazers traded Gary Trent Jr. and Rodney Hood to the Toronto Raptors to acquire Norman Powell. Powell was averaging a career-high season in Toronto before getting traded, and he looks like be a great pickup by the Portland Trail Blazers.

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Powell's addition has increased the Portland Trail Blazers' projected win tally, and the scoring trio of Lillard, McCollum and Powell could be quite potent.

Key Player - Damian Lillard

Damian Lillard
Damian Lillard

Damian Lillard has been in sizzling form this season. He did not have the services of Jusuf Nurkic, CJ McCollum and Zach Collins for large swathes this season but still managed to earn victories for his team.

He is averaging 30 points per game on 55% shooting this season and is in conversation for his first-ever MVP award. Lillard's clutch play has been off the charts this year; he is sinking game-winners on a nightly basis, and opposition defenses tend to freak out when he gets the ball in the final minutes.

Portland Trail Blazers Predicted Lineup

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Point Guard - Damian Lillard | Shooting Guard - CJ McCollum | Small Forward - Derrick Jones Jr. | Power Forward - Robert Covington | Center - Enes Kanter.

Portland Trail Blazers vs Orlando Magic Match Prediction

The Portland Trail Blazers are overwhelming favorites to win this game. With an injury-plagued roster and not a single active player averaging double-digit points, the Orlando Magic have almost no chance of winning this game.

In all likelihood, it could be a blowout win for the Portland Trail Blazers.

Where to watch the Portland Trail Blazers vs Orlando Magic game?

The Portland Trail Blazers vs Orlando Magic game will have local coverage on FOX Sports Florida and NBC Sports Northwest. The match can also be streamed live with an NBA League Pass.

Also Read: Portland Trail Blazers acquire Norman Powell, LA Clippers eyeing Rajon Rondo | NBA Trade Deadline 2021.

Published 26 Mar 2021, 21:03 IST
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