The Blazers were absolutely throttled from the opening tip by the Kings Saturday night, in a low point of the 2019-20 season. Portland couldn’t defend the perimeter for the 2nd (or 65th) straight game, and Sacramento made them pay. The Kings also ran circles around the slow-moving Blazers, who looked increasingly frustrated as they realized they had no control over the result, and the game spiraled away. It was unfortunately an apt parallel to the Blazers’ lost season.
Let’s discuss what we can take from this game.
Shut. It. Down. Distastrous, distasteful, disheartening back-to-back losses to the Suns and Kings have left the Blazers reeling, watching their playoff hopes slip away. They’re now 4.5 games behind Memphis with 18 to play. Who should they shut down, you ask? Well...
Damian is not himself. Lillard looked a step slow all night, needing to use his off-arm to clear space on the perimeter, missing a bucketful of shots, and at one point grimacing as a teammate helped him up. He finished with 12 points on 4-15 shooting.
McCollum strikes again. A frustrated CJ took issue with Alex Len daring to screen him, and finally shoved him away, leading to a dust-up. It was basically the only interesting thing that happened tonight.
On the bright side... The bench had some fun at the end of the game, leading to the deceptively-close final score, and the fans did their best all night to bring the energy the team itself rarely displayed.
The Blazers get a few days of rest at home, then get a rematch with the Phoenix Suns Tuesday night.