NBA playoffs preview: Spurs-Blazers series promises fireworks

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The matchup between Tony Parker (right) and Damian Lillard (center) will help dictate the series.

The matchup between Tony Parker (right) and Damian Lillard (center) will help dictate the series.

Spurs in seven. San Antonio's ability to find a way to harness and ultimately defeat a potent, up-and-coming Warriors team last year looms large in this decision, as does the world-beating brilliance it flashed in Game 7 against Dallas. Home-court advantage helps, too. Popovich's Spurs are masters at steering opponents away from their preferred options, but all bets are off if Aldridge and Lillard continue to combine for the 55 points a game they averaged against the Rockets.