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Blazers vs. Heat Final Score: 99-83; Portland Crushes Miami With Strong Third Quarter

A 33-16 third quarter powered the Trail Blazers to a home win over the Miami Heat.

Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

Once again, it only took one quarter for the Trail Blazers to blow away the competition.

LaMarcus Aldridge had 24 points and 12 rebounds, Wesley Matthews had 18, and the Portland Trail Blazers crushed the Miami Heat, 99-83, Thursday night at Moda Center.

Portland started the game cold, missing their first four shots.  Aldridge and Damian Lillard got things going afterwards, with Aldridge scoring eight in the period to lead the Blazers, but a bad turnover by Wesley Matthews near the end of the quarter allowed Miami the final shot, which Chris Bosh hit to give the Heat a five point lead after one.

For consecutive games, the distance shooting has not been falling at the rate the Blazers normally shoot at, with the team shooting just 11-of-31 in the second quarter.  Lillard missed five straight shots at one point, Batum missed back-to-back open threes, and the team missed four different shots from with two feet of the basket.  The defense kept the Blazers in the game, with good defense by Matthews forcing Dwyane Wade to miss his final four shots of the period.  Aldridge had 12 at the break to lead Portland.

Scary moment with under a minute to play in the half.  During a turnover by Miami, Lillard and Wade collided going for the loose ball.  Both players stayed down on the court for the next possession, and Lillard was clearly favoring his back as he went to the locker room.

Lillard returned to action in the second half in a big way.  The shots that would not fall in the first half started falling through the hoop in the third quarter.  Lillard had five, Aldridge had ten, and the Blazers plastered the Heat defense 33-16 in the quarter.  You know everything was going well when Dorell Wright drained a long two off an in-bounds pass from an impossible angle, giving Portland a 12 point lead after three.

Matthews went to work in the final period, scoring ten points, and expanding the Portland lead to as large as 23.  The strong rebounding inside by Meyers Leonard and Chris Kaman helped seal the game.

Lillard finished with 16 points.  Steve Blake led the bench scoring with seven.


Gameday Thread Comments of the Night

Thanks to all who participated in tonight's Gameday Thread! Amongst the nearly 2,000 comments, these were the favorites:

# Recs Commenter Comment Link
12 BlazerRoddy My wife has figured out my plan.
10 Timmay! Wow, that's a REALLY weird misspelling of "James Harden".
6 jenstcy Gonna be at the Moda tonight!
6 Mortimer Now ya gotta break the pattern and do it on non-game nights
5 pklym da dadadadada da da
5 Bib Fortuna Teams from Florida always have horrible third quarters against teams from Oregon
5 AUS2PDX Give the guy a break he's clearly hurting
4 pklym lalalalala I can't hear you
4 Showtime14 What comeback? The Blazers are technically ahead if they are down by less than 30.
4 Norsktroll Awesome
4 Visionary2 LOL over the TNT broadcast...

Post-Game Reaction