Blazers Spurs Gouge Lillard-Less – Blazer’s Edge – .

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Blazers Spurs Gouge Lillard-Less – Blazer’s Edge – .


The Portland Trail Blazers didn’t miss Damian Lillard in an outing earlier this week against the modest Detroit Pistons, but that wasn’t the case Thursday night against the somewhat less modest San Antonio Spurs. Portland dug a hole early with an excruciating defense against a San Antonio team that are terminally poor on offense most nights. They would spend the rest of the night trying to dig. Despite the surge in energy in the second half, Portland couldn’t score quickly enough to close the deficit. They ended up losing 114-83 to lower their record to 11-12, 10-2 at home.

CJ McCollum and Norman Powell led the Blazers tonight, but they only scored 16 apiece. Powell shot 3-13. Ben McLemore hit some threes? I guess there is that.

First shift

The Spurs came out shooting three-pointers like they were old-fashioned. They only connected on a couple at first, but that was enough, as the Blazers spent the opening minutes of the game hitting exactly nothing. Portland passed the ball through Jusuf Nurkic – who missed all of his shots – or from him to Norman Powell, who also missed all of his shots. Robert Covington, of all, bailed out the Blazers with a three and a tip, plus an assist to Powell for a three. It broke the ice, but wasn’t enough to stimulate the attack, especially with San Antonio scoring relatively freely on the other side. Portland’s bench unit registered already passed on the scoreboard and it didn’t improve much. The three and San Antonio’s exits have made the Blazers downright fragile. They had 6 triples and 6 layups during the period, leading 32-22 after one.

Second quarter

The second half started with the Blazers letting the Spurs get layups. Lots of layups. To make matters worse, Anfernee Simons twisted an ankle landing on Thaddeus Young’s foot. He wouldn’t be coming back to the contest… and it was with Lillard already out. This is around the time that CJ McCollum came alive, trying to score and / or prepare his opponents. Unfortunately, Spurs got three lay-ins for every CJ bucket created. And THEN the Spurs started hitting three again. Portland also hit a few long balls, but Holy Llamas, the action was lousy. San Antonio finished the first half with 11 three shots. For reference, they average 10 per game. The Spurs led 68-47 in the intermission.

Third quarter

The Blazers showed effort early in the second half. They had a lot more shots than San Antonio. Unfortunately, they missed most of them. Spurs managed half the number of attempts but shot 50%. It pretty much evened out. When you’re depressed, you need more than a night out, however. Both teams spent the remainder of the period throwing bricks or, in San Antonio’s case, throwing the ball. It didn’t help. A 15-4 run for Portland took most of the quarterback, but didn’t get them close to 16. The score was 84-65, the Spurs after three.

Fourth trimester

To their credit, the Blazers mounted the mandatory rally in the fourth period. Their deeper bench team put in the effort that the players in the upper rotation didn’t. Forced turnovers and San Antonio’s inability to hit a jumper reduced the lead to 12 with 8:30 a.m. to go. This is where it ended. Bryn Forbes hit some threes and the rally was done. As Steve Jones said, getting fat takes everything to go perfectly. This is not the case.

Following

Stay tuned for an in-depth analysis of the game.

The score of the box

The Blazers host the Boston Celtics at the Moda Center on Saturday night at 7:00 p.m. Peaceful.

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