LaMarcus Aldridge led the Blazers with 27 points and 16 rebounds, but nearly ever player had a forgettable night overall.
In the past 12 days, Portland played in Dallas, San Antonio, Houston, San Antonio, Oakland, and three scattered games in Portland. All 8 games were against teams jockeying for position in the Western Conference. This was the classic definition of a "schedule loss", as Memphis was rested and waiting for this game, and came out hungry.
First Quarter: Right into a rough start. The Blazers showed their weariness early, moving slowly as the rested Grizz scored the first 10 points, forcing a timeout. Somehow, Portland makes a run, as Batum and Aldridge lead them back through the quarter, cutting the deficit to 2 in the final minutes. But just like that, the Grizzlies took advantage of a few mistakes, jumping ahead by 9 with a quick run.
Memphis 31, Portland 22
Gosh... Bad start... bad finish...
Second Quarter: Things continued to roll downhill, with Memphis pushing the lead to 13 in the first few minutes. Portland continued to miss three-pointers, and the bench couldn't bail out the starters tonight. Mike Conley's three-pointer bumped the lead to 17. Portland finally made an adrenaline-fueled run late, but that led to dumb mistakes and turnovers, giving Memphis the relatively easy ability to maintain their lead.
Memphis 61, Portland 46
I didn't spend five hours in traffic and then walking two miles in the snow to make it home just in time to see this! C’mon Blazers!!!!
Third Quarter: Portland couldn't put together a run, as Memphis' lead reached 20 at the halfway point. The live crowd (and by proxy, every fan watching) grumbled as they realized they were watching one of the ugliest games of the season, just two days after the previous ugly one. Possession after possession, the Blazers just couldn't get the ball in the hoop. Memphis' defense wasn't helping, but the Blazer team we'd previously seen could have scored anyway. This team still hadn't hit a three-pointer through the third quarter. When former Blazer Zach Randolph hit a jumper, the Grizz led by 24, and looked relaxed and in control. The Blazers looked completely frustrated after scoring 12 points.
Memphis 81, Portland 58
Fourth Quarter: Lillard finally hit the Blazers' first three pointer of the game to open the quarter, with Meyers Leonard completing a four point play. Portland made a late run, but Memphis easily held them off.
Finally, three full days off for the Blazers. They pick things up on Saturday night, when the Raptors come to town.
Gameday Thread Comments of the Night:
Thanks to everyone who participated in tonight's Gameday Thread! As always, here are the most popular comments, based on the number of Rec's from their fellow fans: