USA TODAY Sports
Welcome to Hangover City. Population: The Portland Trail Blazers.
The Blazers were led by Oakland native Damian Lillard, who scored a career high 37 points. Nicolas Batum (16 points), Wesley Matthews and Luke Babbitt (both 10 points) also scored in double figures. LaMarcus Aldridge had a rough night, finishing with 7 points and 6 rebounds, but with 5 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks.
First Quarter: The hangover was apparent within seconds. All jumpers were off the mark, and all defensive rotations were a step slow. The Blazers stayed close for a bit, but the Warriors used their energy and outside shooting (and 27% Blazer shooting) to jump into a 9 point lead after the first.
Are we losing already? I swear, there’s a curse on that building.
Second Quarter: The lead quickly reached double-digits. The Blazer bench enjoyed extended minutes after the starters played long minutes yesterday, and I use the term "enjoyed" loosely. The Golden State lead was soon 17. No Blazers could score, even Aldridge was bricking from all angles. Portland took another timeout, down 19. The crowd celebrated as the Warriors were easily destroying the exhausted Blazers. After shooting an abysmal 23% in the first half, the Blazers were very lucky to only be down 15 when heading to the locker room.
I really wish I could just Tweet Stotts and tell him..it's OK if you pull the starters... for the REST OF THE GAME.
Third Quarter: Golden State tried to pull away, but the Blazers would have none of it. Portland kept the game within 14, and every time the Warriors made a run, a key shot kept the Blazers within shouting distance. However, with 6 minutes left, Golden State stopped a Blazer run and took a 20 point lead. However, hometown boy Lillard hit 5 quick points, and two Batum free throws cut the lead to 13 again. The Blazers were once again down 15, headed into the fourth quarter.
I am really disturbed by David Lee’s lack of a neck
Fourth Quarter: A Luke Babbitt three cut the lead to 12, and a Lillard three cut it to 11. Then a Babbitt two cut it to 10. Then Lillard for three again... Swish! Suddenly, it was an 8 point game! The crowd was split between celebration and moaning each time Lillard hit another shot. However, the Warriors just couldn't miss, and before long, the lead was 11 again. When the Golden State shots started missing, they called timeout, still leading by 9 with five minutes left. A dominant Damian (who made 10 consecutive shots) cut it to 7 out of the timeout. Babbitt had an open three to cut it to 4... but missed. Batum hit a three to cut it to 6, but at that point it was too late. The Blazers made a valiant comeback, even cutting the lead to 3 on another Lillard three-pointer, but came up short. The Oakland fans celebrated a big victory over their local hero.