A defensive battle between the Blazers and Pacers got chippy at times, but Portland managed to topple the stubborn club from Indiana.
Damian Lillard had 23 points and Nicolas Batum had 13 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists as the Blazers beat Indiana 88-82 Thursday night at Moda Center.
For a time in the first quarter, the only things falling in the building were shooting percentages and the promotional Ford blimp. Portland shot just 6-of-24 in the period, while Indiana shot 7-of-21. LaMarcus Aldridge scored seven in the period (on 3-of-9 shooting), but moved into third place all-time on the Portland Trail Blazers career rebound list. The Blazers led 16-14 after one, the combined 30 points the lowest single quarter output by the Blazers this season.
The shots started going in for the Blazers at the start of the second quarter, but the defense for both teams remained rigid. Portland got out to a eight point lead, but Indiana closed the gap with a 7-0 run as Portland had difficulty stopping the normally ice-cold C.J. Miles. Damian Lillard returned the favor, scoring six in the period, and Portland led 38-33 at halftime.
Things got chippy at the start of the second half as both David West and Roy Hibbert took shots at Robin Lopez, resulting in a technical foul on West as he shoved Lopez into the hoop support. The Portland starters found their rhythm, but the Pacers kept the game close, closing a 10 point deficit down to one. Portland took a three point lead into quarter number four.
The ebb and flow continued into the final period as Portland got out to a nine point lead, only to have Indiana get to within three with under a minute to go. Aldridge hit two free throws, and Damjan Rudez missed a three to seal the game. Scary moment when C.J. Watson stepped on Lillard's shooting hand moments later, but Lillard stayed in the game.
Aldridge finished 18 points and 13 rebounds, and Allen Crabbe had 6 points in a fine defensive effort off the bench.
Gameday Thread Comments of the Night
This is just plain ridiculous. They're not scrappy they're abusive
It's very annoying when a team pushes and shoves and elbows, then falls down for no reason. This team would make Bill Lambeer proud.
These guys are the Teletubbies compared to Laimbeer.
The Trail Blazers have now won six consecutive home contests against the Pacers. #PORvsIND— Trail Blazers PR (@TrailBlazersPR) December 5, 2014
Portland has won all 10 games this season when leading after three quarters.— Trail Blazers PR (@TrailBlazersPR) December 5, 2014
That's the first time #Blazers won a game after scoring less than 90 points since they beat Philadelphia 89-85 on Dec. 29, 2012.— Mike Tokito (@mtokito) December 5, 2014
Looks like Lillard must have hurt his hand on this play. pic.twitter.com/1WsVempiJh— Bruce Ely (@bruceely) December 5, 2014
Coach Stotts says Damian Lillard's hand is fine.— Jay Allen (@PDXjay) December 5, 2014
#Blazers coach Terry Stotts said Damian Lillard had postgame tests on his right hand and it checked out fine.— Joe Freeman (@BlazerFreeman) December 5, 2014
Terry Stotts said he was unaware of the blimp incident— Casey Holdahl (@CHold) December 5, 2014
"As long as it's a peaceful demonstration, I don't see the harm in it." -- @rolopez42— Casey Holdahl (@CHold) December 5, 2014
Lillard has a towel on that right hand...was told he jammed his finger. #Blazers— Jabari Young (@JabariJYoung) December 5, 2014
. @wessywes2 also was clueless about the blimp-cident. Said he was too busy focusing on his job.— Casey Holdahl (@CHold) December 5, 2014
Ford Blimp absent from locker room postgame. @blazertodd asked about it, shook his head, said "doesn't look good."— Trail Blazers (@trailblazers) December 5, 2014
That was also 13th time in Stotts era that #Blazers were under 20% on threes, and 4th time they won. One of previous also was vs. Indy.— Mike Tokito (@mtokito) December 5, 2014
Lillard got an x-Ray on the right hand, said everything is fine...just jammed his finger #Blazers— Jabari Young (@JabariJYoung) December 5, 2014
"I'm not mad at 'em about it." — @Dame_Lillard on protests outside of the Moda Center— Casey Holdahl (@CHold) December 5, 2014
Full Lillard quote on the protestors outside Moda Center pic.twitter.com/J7Z8Qkjp3C— Erik Gundersen (@blazerbanter) December 5, 2014
Lillard said he felt his right hand go "pop, pop" as he crashed to Moda Center court. But X-rays revealed no issue. "I'll be fine," he said.— Joe Freeman (@BlazerFreeman) December 5, 2014
"We can't deny them. We hope they are non-violent and they don't break anything. Can't stop them." -- Nicolas Batum on the protestors— Erik Gundersen (@blazerbanter) December 5, 2014
Blazer C @ChrisKaman's wife, Emilie, due Dec. 18 with 1st child. Chris: "I'm nervous I'm going to be gone when the baby comes. I hope not."— kerry eggers (@kerryeggers) December 5, 2014
'@rolopez42 on blazer win over Pacers: "Memphis isn't the prettiest team in the league, but they just grind it out. We can do it both ways"— kerry eggers (@kerryeggers) December 5, 2014
VIDEO: Nicolas Batum gets the steal and LaMarcus Aldridge finishes the fast break with a layup.
VIDEO: Nicolas Batum finds a cutting Allen Crabbe for an open dunk.
VIDEO: Nicolas Batum beats the shot clock with a shot from deep.