Notes & Quotes: Trail Blazers 115, Timberwolves 104
January 25, 2014
• Portland has reached its win total from the previous year (33) faster than any other time in team history by games (44) and date (Jan. 25).
• The Trail Blazers outscored the Timberwolves 60-46 in the paint tonight, tied for Portland’s second-high points in the paint total of the season. In the first matchup of the season, Minnesota outscored Portland 72-34 in the paint.
• LaMarcus Aldridge has extended his career-best streak of 20-point games to 11, the fourth-longest streak in this NBA this season.
• Robin Lopez recorded his 17th double-double of the season. The Trail Blazers are 13-4 when Lopez has a double-double.
• Mo Williams finished the game with 16 points, five rebounds and six assists, the 18th time this season that Williams has scored in double figures. The Trail Blazers are 16-2 when Mo Williams scores in double figures.
• LaMarcus Aldridge led the Trail Blazers in scoring for the ninth consecutive game and the 27th time overall this season.
• LaMarcus Aldridge is now 12-3 in his head-to-heads with Kevin Love.
• With his first rebound tonight, LaMarcus Aldridge joined Kevin Love as the NBA’s only players with 1,000 points and 500 rebounds this season.
• Portland’s 8-0 run from 7:01 to 4:53 in the fourth quarter gave the Trail Blazers their largest lead of the game, 105-88 (17 points).
• The Trail Blazers opened the first 3:57 of the second quarter on a 16-4 run.
• In the first quarter, Nicolas Batum contributed to eight of Portland’s 12 field goals (five field goals, three assists) and led all player with five rebounds.
• Minnesota guard Kevin Martin recorded a first half season high of 20 points tonight. Martin finished with 30 points including 11-for-22 shooting and 6-for-7 from the 3-point line.
On Playing Minnesota's Big Front:
“Obviously, they’re both very physical and they’re very skilled, so that’s an uncommon combination. I thought we handled it pretty well. We got a lot of support from our teammates.”
On Bench Contributions:
“That makes it a lot of fun. You get to come off the court and watch them go to work. That’s fun. Watching T-Rob and Mo go to work, that’s a ball for me.”
“I think they were really aggressive on both ends of the floor. They were attacking the basket, crashing the boards and they were playing defense really well.”
On Bench Play:
“We’ve got to be consistent with it and come in every game and try to give these guys a lift when they need it or be somewhat neutral when those guys have it going. Tonight was a night where I thought we won the battle of the bench. We want to be consistent and try to win the battle more nights than some.”
On CJ McCollum:
“CJ is rook and he is obviously going to get better and better as the season goes on. He’s going to have some great nights, some good night, some not so good. Just the beauty of being a rook. The great thing about it, he’s out there with a guy like me, a veteran guy and he doens’t have a lot of pressure on him. He’s going to have some really, really good nights. Like tonight, he got it going. We went to him and he’s going to have those situations where he’s going to have to knock down the open shot. I thought he did a real good job. Defensively, he had a couple good deflections on his man. He’s doing what he’s supposed to do. He’s going to be a really good player in this league. He’s only going to get better.”
On Aldridge-Love Matchup:
“One thing about LA and we talked about it – I think the media and we put more into it than he did. All he kept saying was, ‘All I care about is the win, all I care about is the win.’ And I believe him. I thought he just came out and just played basketball. He didn’t try to overdo it, he didn’t try to do too much. He wasn’t bigger than the game. He thought the game was more important to win than the matchup with him and Kevin Love.”
On Tonight's Game:
“I thought we played a very good game start to finish. Our bench was terrific. Our reserves were very good in both halves and made a difference in both halves -the energy, just a little bit of everything. Mo did a nice job of running the team, CJ took advantage of his opportunities, Thomas brought energy, Joel battled like he always does, so those guys really made a difference for us. But like always, it was a team win."
“I thought our defense for the most part was pretty good. They got behind us in transition for some transition layups, which is what they do. Martin was hot and I thought made some tough jump shots. He cooled off a little bit, but in a game where, this is two games in a row, where we made 4 threes in the last two games and we win it in other ways. We had 60 points in the paint, which is not something we do a lot. It’s good to see we can win games in other ways.”
On Defending Love:
“I thought we were very attentive to how he gets his baskets, as far as they run screens for him. LaMarcus did a very good job on him in the post, kept him from getting easy baskets. For him to only have one offensive rebound takes a lot of work because he’s always around. If you do a good job on his post-ups and take away offensive rebounds, that leaves perimeter shooting and I thought we did a good job of not giving him necessarily clean looks.”
What Does It Give The Team When Batum Gets Off To A Quick Start?:
“It really doesn’t have to be any one particular guy – whether it’s Nic or LA or Dame or Wes or RoLo, the way we play you don’t know which guy it’s going to be. I liked the way Nic came out. He was aggressive in transition, took the ball to the basket. But whoever it is, I think that kind of sparks confidence with our team.”
On Tonight's Game:
"There were holes in the game where we didn't have that energy. They got up 10 points and then another time they got up more in the double digits. So, it was just one of those games where we were looking for things. They were taking away a lot from me, but [Kevin Martin] stepped up and [Nikola Pekovic] stepped up big for our starting unit and I thought we played well."
On If Team Expected Lillard To Take The Final Shot:
“Absolutely. That’s what all great players want, the last shot. And that’s what he did, big-time players make big-time shots. He hit one in our home, but you just have to move on to the next game.”
On How He Was Feeling Physically:
"It was tough. This morning, it was one of those times where you jump out of bed and think, I don't know how I'm going to play tonight, but you muster up the energy to do so. You get a good meal, a good nap and then you lace them up and hopefully that adrenaline flows, which it did I think for some of us. We're happy to have a day off and head to Chicago tomorrow."
On Battle With LaMarcus Aldridge Tonight:
"It's kind of much ado about nothing. We both particularly didn't have a great game. Other people stepped up on both of our teams, but he came away with the win. So, we're 1-1 for the season series now and hopefully the next time we play them, it'll be a different outcome for us."
On Tonight's Game:
"After playing a tough game last night, I thought we had a lack of energy tonight, but we brought everything we had, so we have to be happy with the way we played. Some parts of the game we didn't, but some we did and we almost came back."
On The Injury Status Of The Team Tonight:
"Well, hanging in there. This is the NBA. You play almost every night and when you get hurt, you sit down or you give whatever you have. I did tonight and I was feeling good so I kept playing."
On Mo Williams:
Shooting the ball. He makes shots and he's smart. He knows how to play the pick and roll. I think he got a couple open shots that he made and he had a great game."
On A Tough Back-To-Back With Banged Up Players:
"I think especially the second half I noticed it. We made runs at them, caught them in the third quarter and everything, butt they just went on one more run and took the lead."
On The Quality of Portland's Bench Tonight:
"They played very well. Mo Williams really played well for them."
On The Kind Of Night Where You Have To Ask More From Your Bench:
"Well, you're just trying to get guys, the starters, some rest and they made a run at that time. Give them credit, they were the aggressors. They did a nice job."
On His Overall Thoughts On Tonight's Game And The Chance To Get Over .500:
"Well, it's a back-to-back game against one of the best teams in the league. It's not going to be an easy game, but I thought we came out and we put the effort in. Like I said, give them credit. They did what they had to do to get the win."