Notebook: Trail Blazers 136, Spurs 106



Posted Mar 9, 2013 12:09 AM

Tim Price, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: Damian Lillard kept cruising to Rookie of the Year honors with 35 points, nine assists and no turnovers and the Portland Trail Blazers put a comprehensive thumping on the San Antonio Spurs 136-106 on Friday.

LaMarcus Aldridge's 26 points, 23 from J.J. Hickson and 20 more off the bench from Eric Maynor added to the 136 total, the most scored against the Spurs in the history of the AT&T Center and the most in a San Antonio home game since 1990 when the Spurs played in Hemisfair Arena. It's the worst home loss since a 33-point defeat to Toronto in the Alamodome in 1997.

Portland (29-32) shot almost 62 percent, scored 46 in the fourth quarter and hit 13-for-21 from the 3-point line (61.9 percent).

It was the first time since Tony Parker injured his ankle four games back that the Spurs appeared to have missed their star point guard. With Lillard, Maynor and Hickson attacking the rim in a fashion more resembling Parker than anything the Spurs did, the Trail Blazers earned 21 trips to the foul line -- six more than the Spurs -- and outscored San Antonio off turnovers 19-6.

The Spurs (48-15) shot 52 percent from the floor. Tim Duncan scored 18. They will limp into a key Western Conference game on Monday at home against Oklahoma City.

QUOTABLE: "There will be a bunch of film session involved in this one. The game just got away from us."
-- Tim Duncan

THE STAT: This game was tied at halftime, yet Portland blew it open by hitting 11-for-15 from 3-point territory and still managed to outscore the Spurs in second-chance opportunities 14-2 in the second half.

TURNING POINT: Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts admitted to being nervous when the Spurs trailed by 12 with 6:15 to go. Portland's last game was still on Stotts' mind, when the Blazers led at Memphis by 12 at halftime and lost. Yet Portland hit the next five shots against the Spurs. Two were 3-pointers from Lillard (he also was fouled on a 3-point shot and made three free throws), Maynor had a 3-pointer and a layup and Aldridge followed with a layup that gave Portland a 123-99 lead with 3:22 remaining, and the subs came in.

QUOTABLE II: "To come in here and win is hard enough. To do it in that fashion is remarkable."
-- Terry Stotts

HOT: Overshadowed in Lillard's excellent performance was Maynor's game off the bench. He played 23 minutes, hit 8-for-11 from the floor (2-for-3 from 3) and had six assists. He's 16-for-24 (4-for-6 from 3) in the last three games and perhaps can make a late run at Sixth Man of the Year honors if he keeps this up.

NOT: Manu Ginobili had his first sub-.500 shooting night for the first time in four games. He went 6-for-15, 2-for-7 from the 3-point line.

FANTASY SPOTLIGHT: If Lillard is Rookie of the Year, he owes some of the award to the Spurs. In three games against San Antonio this season, Lillard was 31-for-58 (53 percent) from the floor, 9-for-18 from the 3-point line, averaged seven assists and 28 points per game.

ROOKIE WATCH: More on Lillard. He missed a career high by two points. He scored 37 off 15 field goals including seven from the 3-point line in a six-point loss on Jan. 11 at Golden State.

NOTABLE: Something bad did happen to the Trail Blazers on Friday. They saw first-half leg injuries to rookies to Meyers Leonard and Victor Claver that occurred within 1 ½ minutes of each other. ... Portland keeps up the chase for a playoff spot, picking up a game on eighth-seeded Utah (losers by a point in Chicago tonight and now 1 ½ games up on the Blazers) and also 1 ½ games back of the Lakers before their game with Toronto started tonight in L.A. ... It's the most points the Spurs have allowed this season, the previous regulation high being 119 by the Pistons in Detroit.

UP NEXT: For the Trail Blazers, Sunday @ New Orleans, Tuesday vs. Memphis, Thursday vs. New York. For the Spurs, Monday vs. Oklahoma City, Tuesday @ Minnesota, Thursday vs. Dallas.