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Blazers’ Commitment to Defense vs. Pacers is a Sign of Improvement

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Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard explained how Portland’s output against the Pacers could serve as a building block for future success.

Portland Trail Blazers v Indiana Pacers Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

The Portland Trail Blazers snapped a five-game losing streak on Tuesday with a much-needed victory over the Indiana Pacers. Buoyed by Anfernee Simons’ 27-point eruption and a stout defensive performance in the third quarter, coach Terry Stotts’ squad took a step in the right direction.

After the game, The Oregonian’s Aaron Fentress highlighted Damian Lillard’s comments on how the Blazers can build on Tuesday’s success. According to the former Weber State standout, Portland’s potential for improvement is directly tied to the defensive end.

“What we did tonight is something that can translate to any game,” Lillard said. “Being committed on the defensive end and just wanting to get that done and wanting to do whatever we got to do to win, I think that’s something that we can carry from this game. There’s no guarantee that it’s going to always happen. We’ve just got to have that same mentality going into this stretch of games. This is what it takes. When you do this, you give yourself a much better chance than we have over the last few weeks.”

The Blazers limited the Pacers to 48 points in the paint and put a lid on the contest thanks to defensive performance that limited Indiana to just 16 points in the third quarter. Individually, Lillard recorded 23 points in 31 minutes of action.

The Trail Blazers return to action tonight against the Grizzlies. You can read the full story from Fentress at Oregon Live.