The Blazers were led by LaMarcus Aldridge again, with 20 points, 16 rebounds and 5 assists. Nicolas Batum added 17 points, 9 assists and 5 rebounds, Damian Lillard finished with 16 points and 6 assists, and Dorell Wright contributed 15 points on 5-5 from three in his return to Philly. Mo Williams added 14 more points off the bench, and the steady Robin Lopez scored 12 points. Rookie Allen Crabbe hit two three-pointers in rare extended minutes.
First Half: Three-pointers were half of the story. Portland hit 11 (tied for a team record) and Philly hit their first give. The other half of the story was the terrible, terrible defense from both teams that led to all those three-pointers. And the Sixers enjoyed the benefit of layup after layup while Lopez guarded Spencer Hawes on the perimeter. As you'd expect with no defense, neither team could truly gain an advantage, as the game was tied repeatedly. But as the second quarter wound down, the Blazers defense picked up a bit, and they were able to build a little buffer before halftime.
Portland 71, Philadelphia 64
Yikes. The Blazers give up 64 points in the 1st half to the 76ers 26th ranked offense.
Third Quarter: The Blazers remembered they were the Blazers, and reminded Philly. Before the Sixers could really leave the locker room, Portland rained three's from all over the court. Swish, swish, swish, as the crowd groaned. Suddenly after 6 minutes, the Blazers led by 22 points! The shots that were swishing for the Sixers started bouncing off the rim, and the Blazers vacuumed down the rebounds. Birthday Boy Batum nailed three-pointers and made nifty passes for beautiful layups, as the lead reached 26 and Blazers Coach Terry Stotts brought in the bench with 4 minutes left, as Portland had already reached 100 points. By the time former Sixer Dorell Wright nailed his fourth straight three-pointer, the Blazers led by a shocking 32 points.
How did the quarter end? Wright finished off the Sixers by banking in a long three-pointer at the buzzer. Track it down if you can.
Is there a mercy rule?
Fourth Quarter: Mo Williams promptly sank another three to start the quarter. From there, the benches cleared, and the quality of play was about as you'd expect. However, Meyers Leonard and Daniel Orton got into a scuffle, with Leonard throwing Orton to the ground, who responded with an elbow to the face. Both players were ejected. See video of the incident here. Blazer fans got a rare opportunity to see Elliot Williams, who had limited minutes down the stretch for Philly. The excitement ended there though, as the clock slowly ticked down and the Blazers prepped for a very short night of rest.
The Blazers are back in action less than 20 hours after the final buzzer tonight, a 3pm PST Sunday afternoon game against the Detroit Pistons! In the meantime, stay tuned for more from Dave later tonight.
Comments of the Night:
Thanks for participating in our Gameday Threads, which were insane during the third quarter! Here were tonight's most popular comments: