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Blazers Look for First Four-Game Winning Streak as Sixers Visit Rip City
Winners of three in a row and four of their last six since the NBA All-Star break, the Portland Trail Blazers (27-35) return home to Moda Center for a two-game homestand to welcome the Philadelphia 76ers (23-40) Thursday night in Portland. The 76ers took the first meeting between the two sides back on January 20 in Philadelphia, 96-92, in a game that game down to the final seconds.
Since the All-Star break, the Trail Blazers have averaged 116.8 points per game, the second-best average in the NBA. Also in that time frame, Damian Lillard is averaging 28.3 points per game while shooting 49.2% from the field and 41.9 % from deep. CJ McCollum has continued his career year, shooting 54.2% from three-point range since the All-Star break. Center Jusuf Nurkić has scored 15-plus points in four consecutive games, a career-best run. The Bosnian big man is averaging career highs of 14.9 points, 8.1 rebounds and four assists since joining the Trail Blazers in a trade with Denver on February 13.
Philadelphia visits the Rose City having lost five of their last six games. With center Joel Embiid sidelined with a knee injury, forward Robert Covington leads the 76ers with 12.4 points per game while rookie Dario Sarić has averaged 11.6 points and 6.3 rebounds in his first NBA season. Former Trail Blazers guard Gerald Henderson is averaging 9.8 points over 56 games this season for his hometown Sixers.
Thursday's tipoff is set for 7pm from Moda Center as Kevin Calabro, Lamar Hurd and Brooke Olzendam head the coverage locally on CSNNW. Brian Wheeler has the call on Rip City Radio 620 and the Trail Blazers mobile app.