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Portland Trail Blazers vs. Houston Rockets Preview

Another one.

NBA: Houston Rockets at Portland Trail Blazers Steve Dykes-USA TODAY Sports

Portland Trail Blazers (27-46) vs Houston Rockets (19-55)

The Portland Trail Blazers face the Houston Rockets for a second game on a home back-to-back. The Blazers lost to the Rockets 125-106 after letting the game get away from them in the first quarter. As the game went on, it was clear that they weren’t going to catch up. Now, they will attempt to face the Rockets yet again.

Saturday, March 26- 7:00 p.m. PT
How to watch on TV: Root Sports NW, NBA League Pass
Blazers injuries: Damian Lillard (out), Nassir Little (out), Jusuf Nurkic (out), Eric Bledsoe (out), Didi Louzada (out), Joe Ingles (out), Anfernee Simons (out), Josh Hart (day-to-day), Justise Winslow (day-to-day)
Rockets Injuries: John Wall (out), Usman Garuba (out), Trevelin Queen (out)
SBN Affiliate: The Dream Shake
Odds: POR +4, U/O 231.5

What To Watch For

  • Three-point shooting. While the Blazers hung in there with the Rockets elsewhere on the court, they did not shoot well from beyond the arc. They need to improve on last night’s 3 of 20 shooting from three in order to be able to make a difference, especially if the Rockets get out early like they did in the previous game.
  • Game Pace. The Blazers have struggled to take control of games in recent matchups, letting their opponents dictate the flow of the game. In turn, this leads to what we saw against the Rockets last night: Houston was able to score in the first quarter, build a lead, and then manage the pace of the game to their advantage. The Blazers cannot let them do that again.
  • Dunks, dunks, and more dunks. At the very least, Drew Eubanks has been showing Rip City what a center who dunks can do. He walked away last night with seven dunks. Even if there is nothing else to hope for, we can all agree that Drew Eubanks is fun to watch.

What Others Are Saying

After the game, Houston’s coach, Stephen Silas, reflected on the win, per Jonathan Feigen of Texas Sports Nation.

“I guess the challenge is to continue to do the things that got us the lead,” Rockets coach Stephen Silas said. “There were times during the game we kind of strayed from that. Overall, it was a really good effort. We moved the ball and wanted to get a bunch of assists and got 27, which is good.

“For our young group, we haven’t been in this position, I don’t even remember the last time, where we could just start and get a really good lead and hang onto the lead, understanding this is another learning point, understanding that you have to play in a sustainable way. You can’t just go up and down and up and down and expect to keep the lead or expand on the lead.”

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