PORTLAND, Ore., May 2 (Ticker) --
After nearly setting an NBA
record for consecutive playoff losses, the Portland Trail
Blazers are on the verge of setting a record for consecutive
NBA TV highlights from|
scored 10 of his 18 points in a huge second quarter
as the Trail Blazers coasted to a 125-103 rout of the Dallas
Mavericks, forcing a seventh game in their Western Conference
Portland dropped the first three games of the series to extend
its playoff losing streak to 10 games, one shy of the NBA
record. But the Trail Blazers have resurrected themselves in a
week, becoming only the third NBA team to tie a series after
losing the first three games.
No NBA team has ever won a series after trailing, 3-0. Game
Seven is Sunday at Dallas.
"I think they're a little scared now, they've got their backs
against the wall," Portland forward Ruben Patterson
were down 3-0, we came back. Now they know we're going to be
tough. ... I can't wait for Sunday."
collected 21 points and 10 rebounds and Patterson
added a playoff career-high 20 points for the Trail Blazers, who
matched a franchise playoff record with 59.8 percent shooting
"My whole message is the series isn't over until one team wins a
fourth game," Trail Blazers coach Maurice Cheeks said. "Now
we're down to that. Once the ball goes up Sunday, everything is
Portland held a 27-24 advantage after one quarter before simply
burying Dallas in the second period. Rasheed Wallace
3-pointer that triggered a 19-3 tear as the Trail Blazers built
a 46-27 cushion with 6:18 left before halftime.
Wallace scored nine of his 13 points in a period that saw
Portland outscore Dallas, 37-14. Damon Stoudamire
's jumper with
three seconds left before the half made it 64-38, sending the
Rose Garden crowd into a frenzy.
"We believed from the beginning and the fans here, they believed
in us," Wallace said. "There were a couple of people here that
counted us out, but everyone was out here today and they saw it.
We were just not ready for it to end."
Dallas superstar Dirk Nowitzki
was held to four points on
2-of-11 shooting. Nowitzki averaged a playoff-leading 34.8
points in the first five games of the series.
"We played well on our home court and did not win on Wednesday
and I thought tonight's game would be close, so, no, I didn't
see this coming," Dallas coach Don Nelson said. "It didn't
matter what we did, when they made that run in the second
quarter, we couldn't stop it."
finished with 21 points and six assists and Michael
scored 20 points for Dallas, which rested its "Big Three"
the entire fourth quarter. The dispirited Mavericks have not
lost four straight since a six-game skid from February 29-March
"I thought they were really active defensively," Nowitzki said.
" They played with a lot of emotion. I thought we were really
good in the first quarter. But the bottom fell out after that
and it wasn't much of a game. He just dismiss it as that and
move on." Six Trail Blazers scored in double figures as the team
displayed a level teamwork and cohesiveness that was absent in
their losses. Portland finished with 32 assists as Wallace and
reserve Jeff McInnis
each had six.
scored 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting and
Stoudamire finished with 14. Wells made 9-of-14 shots and
Patterson was 8-of-10 from the floor.
"We just wanted to get one victory, and once you get one
victory, anything can happen," Stoudamire said. "I've been in a
seven-games series where we've been down 3-1, a couple of my
teammates have. I don't think we've ever had panic."
Portland shot 59 percent (16-of-27) in the second quarter while
Dallas clicked at just 26 percent (5-of-19) over the decisive
"Everybody who stepped on the floor for us, played good
defense," Cheeks said. "Our defense was the big thing."
The Trail Blazers held a commanding 45-32 edge on the glass.
Sabonis grabbed eight and Wallace, Stoudamire and Wells all
finished with six.
"Today obviously we couldn't rebound," said Nowitzki, who failed
to grab a rebound. "This has been a key for us the whole year.
If we don't rebound the ball, we're in trouble. Today was just
an awful rebounding game again."
The big first half for Portland came without forward Scottie
, who is still feeling the effects of a sore left knee.
Pippen played seven minutes in the second half and finished with
Pippen's jumper with 1:24 left in the third quarter gave
Portland its largest lead, 95-63.
The Mavericks actually got off to a decent start as a jumper by
Finley gave them their largest lead at 18-11. Sabonis and
Stoudamire each scored four points in a 16-4 tear that gave the
Blazers the lead for good.