Notebook: Trail Blazers 92, Celtics 86



Posted Feb 25, 2013 1:20 AM

By Kerry Eggers, For NBA.com

THE FACTS: Wesley Matthews scored 24 points -- including a decisive 3-pointer with 53.6 seconds left -- as the Portland Trail Blazers ended a season high seven-game losing streak by beating the Boston Celtics 92-86 Sunday night at the Rose Garden. All five starters scored in double figures for the Blazers (26-30), including Nicolas Batum with 18 points, LaMarcus Aldridge with 16, Damian Lillard with 12 and J.J. Hickson with 11. Paul Pierce totaled 23 points, eight assists and seven rebounds for the Celtics (29-27), 1-3 on their current five-game road trip. Kevin Garnett added 20 points and nine rebounds for Boston. The Blazers are in 10th place in the Western Conference, four games behind eighth-place Houston and 2 1/2 games back of the ninth-place Los Angeles Lakers.

QUOTABLE: "I can't remember when we got our last win ... it was after the Super Bowl. Seems like two years ago."

--Nicolas Batum, reflecting on Portland's last victory, which was actually on Feb. 4 in a 100-98 triumph over Minnesota

THE STAT: Boston shot only 42.4 percent from the field, including 15.4 (2-for-13) from 3-point range. The Blazers won the game at the 3-point line, going 7-for-21.

TURNING POINT: Portland scored the final six points of the game. With the score tied 86-86, Lillard's driving layup and three-point play gave Portland an 89-86 lead with 1:32 remaining. After a missed 3-point attempt by Pierce, Matthews buried the dagger with his trey at the other end.

QUOTABLE II: "We didn't finish any quarter well. Every quarter, [the Blazers] made a run. It was a get-able game, but give them credit. They made some big shots."

-- Boston coach Doc Rivers

HOT: Matthews was 8-for-11 from the field, including 5-for-8 from 3-point range.

NOT: Boston's bench combined on 7-for-26 shooting.

GOOD MOVE: When Aldridge got in foul trouble, Portland coach Terry Stotts went to rookie Victor Claver -- a natural small forward -- at power forward. Claver responded with a season-high 10 rebounds to go with four points and two steals in 20 minutes.

BAD MOVE: None for Portland.

NOTABLE: Portland snapped a six-game losing streak against Boston, beating the Celtics for the first time since December 2008. ... Eric Maynor, acquired Thursday in a deal with Oklahoma City, made his Portland debut. The backup point guard scored two points on 1-for-5 shooting and had three assists in 15 minutes ... Jordan Crawford, recently acquired by Boston in a trade with Washington, was held scoreless in 12 minutes off the bench. ... Portland won the rebound battle 47-36.

QUOTABLE III: "We haven't lost belief. We still feel we can make the playoffs. We have a long homestand to finish the season. We know what we have to do."

-- Wesley Matthews on Portland's postseason hopes

UP NEXT: For the Celtics, Monday @ Utah, Friday vs. Golden State, Tuesday @ Philadelphia. For the Trail Blazers, Wednesday vs. Denver, Saturday vs. Minnesota, Monday vs. Charlotte.