Following a surprising victory over Russell Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Portland Trail Blazers were feeling good heading into Thursday’s showdown with the Denver Nuggets in the Mile High City. However, the Blazers came out flat, as the Nuggets brought them back down to earth in a 132-120 trouncing. Denver jumped out to a 74-56 halftime lead (shooting 9-13 from 3-point land in the first half) and never looked back. The Blazers were not able to cut the deficit any closer than 10 in the second half. Eight Nuggets scored in double-figures, led by Danilo Gallinari with a season-high 27 points. Damian Lillard led the Blazers with 40 points and 10 assists in a losing effort.
That ball movement we saw from Portland in the last two games has not yet arrived here in Denver.— Casey Holdahl (@CHold) December 16, 2016
Mason Plumlee was asked if he is worried about inconsistency becoming a trait for the Blazers. "It already is," he said.— Mike Richman (@mikegrich) December 16, 2016
Damian Lillard spoke with the media following the game about what went wrong and the team’s lack of consistency:
Dwight Jaynes of CSN NW also touched on the team’s inconsistency:
Yeah, they fooled us again, those Portland Trail Blazers. A physical effort in a one-point loss at the LA Clippers followed by a pounding of the Oklahoma City Thunder the next night had us believing that the Trail Blazers had finally found themselves on defense.
But no. Not really. Not at all.
I'm not sure if that's something to do with the team's defensive system or its attitude. But something's wrong and I guess we better get used to it.
Inconsistency appears to be the identifiable trait of this team.
Things don’t get any easier for the Trail Blazers (13-15), as they head to Oakland to take on the defending Western Conference champion Golden State Warriors (23-4) on Saturday night.