A wild one in Portland Friday night, as the Blazers led most of the night until a late Raptors rally put everything in doubt. But buoyed by a key late steal by Damian Lillard, Portland held on to grab a win against one of the NBA’s best teams. Here were a few essentials from a huge victory to break the Blazers’ two-game losing streak.
- The Blazers Bench Dominates. Portland’s fairly-maligned bench squad completely outclassed their Toronto counterparts, with Coach Terry Stotts keeping them on the court longer than their normal stints. They ran the fading Raptors off the court in the fourth quarter, staying in the game until 4:43 remained. They finished with a combined 56 points.
- Short-staffed Raptors. While both the Blazers and Raptors were playing their third games in four nights, Toronto announced midday that Kyle Lowry was downgraded to questionable, and he was eventually ruled out. Kawhi Leonard returned, struggling at times but helping Toronto make a late fourth quarter run.
A happy weekend off for the Blazers, then a Monday date with the reeling Clippers in Los Angeles.