Turnovers and poor defense ended the Portland road trip in disappointment.
LaMarcus Aldridge had 18 points and 13 rebounds, Wesley Matthews had 19, but the Portland Trail Blazers fell to the Milwaukee Bucks, 95-88, Saturday night at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
Portland took an early 6-2 lead to start the game, but immediately surrendered a 19-4 Milwaukee run on the back of seven team turnovers. Meyers Leonard started at center and scored four points, but had several lapses on the defensive end resulting in points for the Bucks. Damian Lillard led the Blazers in scoring with five, and he was outscored by three different Bucks. Milwaukee led by 12 after one.
Milwaukee led by as many as 16, but one moment seemed to change the tides. After a Wesley Matthews missed layup, Lillard grabbed the rebound near the free throw line and drove to the middle for a one-handed jam that brought the Blazers bench to their feet. Portland would then force five turnovers in less than four minutes, getting out to a 17-2 run, eventually tying the game at 42. Brandon Knight scored for the Bucks to give them a slim a three point lead at halftime. Matthews and Aldridge led the Blazers in second quarter scoring with eight.
The Blazers seized the lead early in the third quarter with threes by Matthews and Nicolas Batum. Milwaukee took it right back, and extended the lead to 10 as Portland's shooting went cold. Dorell Wright hit back-to-back threes to cut back into the lead, only for the Bucks to build their lead up again. Aldridge, Batum, and Lillard shot a combined 2-for-12 in the quarter, and Portland trailed by 11 after three quarters.
Milwaukee came out on fire for the final quarter, extended their lead to 20 on shots by Jared Dudley and O.J. Mayo. Portland used a 9-2 run to close within 13, but Milwaukee held them at bay to secure the game.
Wright led the bench scoring with six, but the bench shot just 9-of-26. Lillard had 19 points on 6-of-19 shooting and nine assists. He also had six turnovers for the second straight night.
Matthews just summed it up: "It was a shit road trip. It was. We're better than this" #Blazers— Jabari Young (@JabariJYoung) February 1, 2015
Lopez just told me he could play now...but, not up to him. #Blazers— Jabari Young (@JabariJYoung) February 1, 2015
Matthews: No state of panic. No state of emergency. But this was a (crap) road trip. It was. We’re better than this & we’ve got to be better— Joe Freeman (@BlazerFreeman) February 1, 2015