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In the face of the NCAA Tournament action, the NBA will try to keep some basketball fans interested in its own proceedings this weekend with 25 games. With less than four weeks left in the regular season, the games are getting more and more important, par



2009-03-20

In the face of the NCAA Tournament action, the NBA will try to keep some basketball fans interested in its own proceedings this weekend with 25 games. With less than four weeks left in the regular season, the games are getting more and more important, particularly for those teams on the fence of making the postseason or not. In the Eastern Conference, six teams are within 4-games of one another for the 8th & final playoff spot, while in the West, only nine teams are left under consideration for the eight spots, with a desperate Phoenix team trailing Dallas by four games for the last position. Both of those clubs play just once this weekend. Here's a look at those games, as well as the rest of the weekend highlight, plus our weekly look at the top StatFox Power Trends for you to consider.

On Friday, Dallas will play its sixth road contest in its last seven games when it takes on Indiana. The Mavericks had endured some major struggles on the road at mid-season but have turned it around of late to move to 19-16 ATS for the season prior to Thursday night's game at Atlanta. However, Dallas is just 2-6 ATS vs. the Central Division this year. The Pacers meanwhile, boast a 21-11 ATS mark versus winning teams in '08-09. Elsewhere, the Celtics will look to turn around a stretch of poor play when they travel to San Antonio in a battle of the current #2 seeds in their respective conferences. Boston is just 1-10 ATS in its L11 games. In terms of the teams contending for the 8th spot in the East, Charlotte will be on the road at Toronto, while New Jersey and New York will be hosting games against Miami and Sacramento, respectively.

Saturday's action is highlighted by a potential Eastern Conference second round playoff preview between Atlanta and Cleveland. With a start time of 1:05 PM ET, the game figures to have a playoff feel to it. The Cavs have maintained their winning ways at home, going 30-1 SU & 22-9 ATS prior to Thursday night's game vs. Portland. The Hawks have struggled on the road at 14-21 SU, but they are in the midst of a 12-game stretch where this will their only road game. Make note that 17 of the L23 games these teams have played in Cleveland have gone OVER the total. Later on at night, the Bulls and Bucks will each be in action, both hosting Western Conference foes. Chicago welcomes Kobe Bryant and the Lakers to town, while the Bucks take on Portland in the final game of a 6-game homestand.

Sunday's 7-game betting board will wrap up the weekend of action in the NBA and only one of the games will be nationally televised, that coming from San Antonio at 1:00 PM ET, as the Spurs host the Rockets. Heading into Friday, the teams were separated by 1-1/2 games for the lead in the Southwest Division. In three meeting this season, San Antonio has won two, including just last weekend in Houston. That game snapped a 6-game winning streak by the home team in the head-to-head series. Overall, nine of the L11 games between the teams have gone UNDER the total. The only other game on Sunday with any playoff-type implications will be between Miami and Detroit. Currently occupying the 5th & 7th spots in the East, each team maintains hope of moving up. Detroit will be hoping to snap a 1-11 ATS skid on Sunday's this year.

Now here's a look at some of the top StatFox Power Trends for this weekend's NBA games.

Friday, 3/20/2009
(803) CHARLOTTE vs. (804) TORONTO
TORONTO is 5-18 ATS (-14.8 Units) in March games over the last 2 seasons. The average score was TORONTO 99.8, OPPONENT 103.4 - (Rating = 2*)

(811) MEMPHIS vs. (812) NEW ORLEANS
NEW ORLEANS is 16-4 ATS (+11.6 Units) at home revenging a same season loss vs opponent over the last 2 seasons. The average score was NEW ORLEANS 99.9, OPPONENT 87.6 - (Rating = 2*)

(819) WASHINGTON vs. (820) DENVER
WASHINGTON is 0-11 ATS (-12.1 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record in 2nd half of this season. The average score was WASHINGTON 88.7, OPPONENT 106.1 - (Rating = 4*)

(821) PHILADELPHIA vs. (822) GOLDEN STATE
GOLDEN STATE is 18-6 OVER (+11.4 Units) in home games revenging a loss vs opponent this season. The average score was GOLDEN STATE 114.9, OPPONENT 111.5 - (Rating = 2*)

Saturday, 3/21/2009
(505) NEW YORK vs. (506) ORLANDO
ORLANDO is 18-5 ATS (+12.5 Units) vs. good offensive teams - scoring 99+ PPG this season. The average score was ORLANDO 103.9, OPPONENT 95.9 - (Rating = 3*)

(507) BOSTON vs. (508) MEMPHIS
MEMPHIS is 0-10 ATS (-11 Units) at home vs. good teams outscoring opponents by 3+ PPG in 2nd half of the L2 seasons. The average score was MEMPHIS 95.4, OPPONENT 113.2 - (Rating = 3*)

(511) PORTLAND vs. (512) MILWAUKEE
MILWAUKEE is 20-6 OVER (+13.4 Units) when playing against a good team (Win Pct. 60%-70%) over the last 2 seasons. The average score was MILWAUKEE 99.9, OPPONENT 105.5 - (Rating = 2*)

(513) WASHINGTON vs. (514) PHOENIX
PHOENIX is 15-1 ATS (+13.9 Units) vs. poor defensive teams (FG defense of >=46%) in 2nd half of the last 2 seasons. The average score was PHOENIX 123.4, OPPONENT 106.4 - (Rating = 4*)

Sunday, 3/22/2009
(701) HOUSTON vs. (702) SAN ANTONIO
SAN ANTONIO is 17-4 ATS (+12.6 Units) at home against good teams (Win Pct. 60%-70%) in 2nd half of the L3 seasons. The average score was SAN ANTONIO 101.3, OPPONENT 90 - (Rating = 2*)

(703) MIAMI vs. (704) DETROIT
DETROIT is 1-11 ATS (-11.1 Units) on Sunday games this season. The average score was DETROIT 87.5, OPPONENT 97.4 - (Rating = 3*)

(709) CLEVELAND vs. (710) NEW JERSEY
Lawrence Frank is 15-36 ATS (-24.6 Units) against top-level teams (Win Pct. > 70%) as the coach of NEW JERSEY. The average score was Frank 86.8, OPPONENT 98 - (Rating = 2*)

(711) GOLDEN STATE vs. (712) NEW ORLEANS
NEW ORLEANS is 43-18 UNDER (+23.2 Units) revenging a loss vs opponent over the last 2 seasons. The average score was NEW ORLEANS 95.5, OPPONENT 92.2 - (Rating = 3*)


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