Notes & Quotes: Trail Blazers 105, Jazz 94

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December 9, 2013

NOTES

• Portland's 9-2 road record is best in the NBA. The Trail Blazers have won nine of their first 11 road games for first time since 1990-91.

• Portland’s 18-4 record marks its best 22-game start since going 20-2 to begin the 1990-91 season.

• Portland has scored 100-plus points in nine straight games of a single season for the first time since March 29-April 24, 1994 (13 games).

• Nicolas Batum has tied his season high with 11 assists (Nov. 2 vs. San Antonio).

• The Blazers are off to their best start since 1990-1991, winning 27 of 30 games to open the season and hold the best record in the Western Conference.

• Three former Jazzmen returned to Utah: Wesley Matthews, Mo Williams and Earl Watson

• Matthews and Williams put up 16 points and nine points, respectively, while Earl Watson did not play

• LaMarcus Aldridge led the team with 24 points and Robin Lopez recorded his ninth double-double of the season with 15 points and 11 assists

• This is Portland’s first win in the last six trips to Utah

• Damian Lillard, former Weber State star, registered 18 points

• The Jazz is now 93-75 all-time against the Blazers and 66-18 at home

• Alec Burks recorded a team-high 20 points off the bench tonight

• Trey Burke (15 points, five assists, six rebounds) has scored in double figures in seven of the last eight games

QUOTES

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Damian Lillard

On Tonight's Game:
“They play hard. The ball bounced their way a few times, but we knew it would be tougher. We played them two or three days ago and they are tougher on their home floor. With us not having the greatest offensive night, we just wanted to stay the course and get the job done and we were able to do that.”

On The Game Being Close:
“I think we got to the point where we said ‘alright we need to get some stops.’ We went to LA (LaMarcus Aldridge) and he hit a couple shots and we did what we’ve been doing all season. We found a way to get a couple shots when we needed to. We found a way to make some big shots.”

On The Offense Being Sluggish Early:
“I was tired. The altitude. It’s tough playing up here. I had some good looks, the ball just didn’t go in a few times. I’m not always going to have a great shooting night, especially after the last two games when I was almost making everything I threw up. I was just happy to get a win.”

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Wesley Matthews

On This Being A Different Game Than The Last Time These Two Teams Played:
“We knew it wasn’t going to be the same. It was more of a slugfest. We knew they were going to be better at home. Their record doesn’t speak (for them) but they have talent. They play hard. The crowd gets into it and add the altitude into it and they have a nice little home court advantage.”

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Robin Lopez

On The Game:
“We knew it wasn’t going to be the same as the previous game. Blowouts happen in the NBA. Especially when you face another team so soon, you know you are going to get their best effort.”

On His Personal Effort:
“Some opportunities, the ball just came to me. We had everybody boxing out for the majority of the game so the ball is going to fall where it does. As far as offensively, my teammates where putting me in good positions. I just have to put the ball in the bucket.”

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Terry Stotts

On Tonight's Game:
“It was kind of the game I expected. We knew that Utah would come out and give us a good test because they play well at home, and the way the first game went against them.”

On The Third Quarter:
“I like the way we played in the third quarter. We stretched the lead, kept ourselves in the position where it wasn’t necessarily threatening. I didn’t think we were that out of it. In the first half, we didn’t shoot the ball well. We didn’t finish. Our offense was struggling a little bit, but we stayed in the game because of our defense. I was confident that at some point the offense would kick in and we’d start making some shots. I thought that’s what happened in the third quarter. Our defense was good in the third quarter. ”

On The Matchup Between Damian Lillard And Trey Burke:
“I’m not much into matchups. I think Damian played the way he normally does, no matter who he’s up against. I know there’s personal pride in personal matchups, but as a coach I’m looking at how we’re playing as a team. I thought Damian competed at both ends of the floor.”

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Enes Kanter

On His Play Over The Last Couple Of Games:
“Well, the last couple of games, Derrick Favors is hurt, and Marvin Williams is hurt. It’s not just me, but other bigs need to step up too. Just play with confidence. The coaches are giving us the opportunity and confidence.”

On The Game Down The Stretch:
“You play good ‘D’ for like 22, 23 seconds, and they hit the crazy shots. It’s tough you know… that’s basketball. You can’t think about it. We just need to learn how to close the games.”

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Richard Jefferson

On Play Down The Stretch:
“Obviously, they are one of the best teams in the league. They have proved it over the first 20-some-odd games. We did a good job. We have some lapses, and there are times when our lapses are longer, and there are times when our lapses are shorter. We had some lapses that game them a cushion. And when you are battling back, the shots like Batum hit, they’re just killers. LaMarcus Aldridge, if you give him a six to eight point cushion, then those shots fall down a little bit easier. But we battled back. Coach Corbin is doing a good job of putting in position. We are just making a lot of young mistakes, inexperienced mistakes. Coach just keeps pushing guys, and we’re getting better. Obviously, you want to have a better showing than the last time you played against these guys, but that was an outlier. That was a game where they would have beaten anyone in the NBA by 20 points that night.”

On What The Common Denominator Is During Those Lapses:
“It’s never one individually. It’s one mistake here or one mistake here. It’s a culmination of a lot of things, but as a team we’re getting better. There are no excuses around here, but not having Derrick Favors, not having Marvin Williams, and getting in foul trouble when you are going against DeMarcus Cousins, those are things that definitely weigh on you as a team. Jeremy Evans and Enes Kanter have done a good job coming off the bench, and now starting, and really answering that. But for the most part, we have a hard working team, and a hard working coaching staff and we’re going to stick together and keep fighting.”

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Trey Burke

On Guarding Damian Lillard:
“I just tried to not give him a lot of space. I think I better job than I did in Portland of getting up on him and contesting his shots. He’s a heck of a player, so you have to make sure you are up on him coming off those screens. We could have done a better job all around on the defensive end. We allowed them to get off to a good start in the third quarter and that kind of killed us.”

On Playing A Guy The Second Or Third Time During A Season:
“I wouldn’t say it is easier, but obviously you know more about him. You know his tendencies and what he’s capable of doing. But in this league, you are going to go up against the top guards in your conference three or four times a year. As a young guard, I have to be able to know what their tendencies are, and what they like to do, and what their weaknesses are. And I will still continue to learn.”

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Tyrone Corbin

On Defending Portland Better The Second Time Around:
“I thought we were able to stay out of rotations, for the most part. But I thought our guys did a better job on the ball. I thought Trey (Burke) and Diante (Garrett) and the guys guarding the ball handlers did a better job recovering so our bigs didn’t have to string out so much.”

On Another Good Game From Alec Burks:
“We were able to take him back off the ball and put him back in the role we had him in in training camp. He’s doing a great job of attacking the secondary part of the offense. I think he’s actually, at times, we can run things through him, especially with the second group.”

On Doing A Better Job Taking Care Of The Ball:
“I thought we were doing a better job there. I thought execution on the offensive end is getting a lot better. We’re sharing the ball. Like tonight, we only had 13 assists, I think. But the passes were there, it just didn’t lead to scoring. I thought we were sharing the ball really well.”