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Jusuf Nurkic Vows to Put ‘Everything Behind Us’ Prior to Game 5

Following a three-game skid, Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic explained how he is mentally preparing for Game 5 against the Lakers.

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Los Angeles Lakers v Portland Trail Blazers - Game Four Photo by Kim Klement-Pool/Getty Images

After an inspiring start to the series against the Lakers, the Trail Blazers have dropped three games in a row and face an elimination game on Wednesday. Following Portland’s blowout loss to Los Angeles on Monday, Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic detailed his thoughts on the officiating in the series and how he is preparing for Game 5.

In the aftermath of a contest that saw the Lakers attempt 30 free throws to the Blazers’ 31, The Athletic’s Jason Quick documented Nurkic’s fine-conscious thoughts on the early whistles from the referees.

“Obviously, people can look at the game and see, I think, what a lot of us see out there,” Jusuf Nurkic said. “But we can’t comment on officials. They see what they see. I don’t want to get fined, but there was a lot out there.”

Officiating aside, Nurkic went on to explain that he is focused on a must-win game on Wednesday.

“Right now,” Nurkic said, “we have to put everything behind us. We have one game we got to win. We can’t lose the next one. That’s all we should focus on.”

Through four postseason outings against the Lakers, Nurkic is averaging 13.8 points and 10.8 rebounds per game.

You can read the full story from Quick at The Athletic (subscription required).