Blazers avenge loss in Sacramento

Portland returns home and pounds the Kings' starters in 109-91 route
Dec. 26, 2012
Damian Lillard drives to the basket Sunday.
AP Photo.

After having their five-game win streak snapped by a team with lockerroom trouble, the Portland Trail Blazers bounced back like a potential playoff team should and beat Sacramento 109-91 Wednesday at the Rose Garden.

LaMarcus Aldridge had 28 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Blazers.

"The way we played (three) days ago wasn't us,'' said Nicolas Batum, who had 18 points for Portland. "We wanted to get back on track against this team. It was so good to beat them in a big way.''

J.J. Hickson added 17 points and 14 rebounds for the Blazers, who built a double-digit lead in the second quarter and then ran away from the Kings, leading by as many as 26 points. Rookie point guard Damian Lillard had 17 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds.

John Salmons led the Kings with 19 points. Reserve Isaiah Thomas had 12 points and Jason Thompson added 11. The Kings are 1-12 on the road this season - the only win coming Dec. 8 against the Blazers.

Portland has won nine of its last 10 games at home. The Blazers tied up the season series with the Kings after losing to them 108-96 on Sunday in Sacramento, which snapped the Blazers' five-game winning streak. Sacramento shot 56 percent from the field in that game, but after a good start Wednesday, went cold and shot just 40 percent for the game.

 

SACRAMENTO 108, PORTLAND 96

An inspired line-up of Sacramento Kings rallied from an early deficit to end Portland's five-game win streak with a 108-96 victory over the Blazers Sunday night.

Sacramento, which played without starting center DeMarcus Cousins due a team suspension, scored 15 straight points in the second quarter to turn a 10-point deficit into a five-point lead and pushed it forward from there. Marcus Thornton led the team with 22 points.

LaMarcus Aldridge had 22 points and 11 rebounds and J.J. Hickson had 14 points and 11 rebounds to lead Portland, which had moved into eighth place in the Western Conference with its win streak.

The loss dropped the Blazers to 13-13 overall and into ninth place with Utah's win over Orlando.

 

PORTLAND 96, PHEONIX 93

Damain Lillard scored 25 points, J.J. Hickson hauled in 15 rebounds and Nicolas Batum doled out eight assists in one of the best team performances of the season for the Portland Trail Blazers Saturday night.

Combined with the return of LaMarcus Aldridge, the Blazers ended a four-game win streak by Phoenix and extended their own to five, 96-93, at the Rose Garden.

Aldridge, who sat out Thursday's win over Denver with an ankle injury, scored 17 points and grabbed nine rebounds in 37 minutes of action.

Lillard

 

PORTLAND 101, DENVER 93

Following a stretch of six losses in eight games, the Portland Trail Blazers, somewhat amazingly, moved themselves into the realm of challenging for a playoff spot Thursday night with a 101-93 win over the Denver Nuggets.

Nicolas Batum scored a team-high 22 points and J.J. Hickson added 18 points and 18 rebounds to lead the Blazers, who improved to 12-12 while playing without All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge.

Aldridge sat out the game with an ankle injury that has left in day-to-day as to when he will return to active duty.

Luke Babbitt added 14 points off the bench, including a key three-point shot as Portland pulled away from an 84-81 lead. Portland hit 14 three-pointers from 36 attempts.

The Nuggets could not overcome missing all 22 of their three-point shots and fell to 14-13 overall.

With the win, the Blazers are tied with Phoenix and Toronto for the longest win streak in the NBA at four heading into a home game with Phoenix Saturday night.

 

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