Blazers Host Bulls To Start Home-Heavy January Schedule

by Casey Holdahl
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Like many teams -- and perhaps even most -- the Trail Blazers (3-3) have gotten their 2020-21 season off to an uneven start. They’ve looked great in victories on the road versus the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers and in San Francisco versus Golden State. And at other times they’ve looked as though they’re still trying to figure things out, such as in losses to the Jazz in their season opener and in their second game in San Francisco versus the Warriors.

But with 10 of their next 12 games at home, they’ll have an opportunity to build some momentum and get in a few weeks of practices in their own gym, something that has been hard to come by with a short training camp and preseason.

First up, the Trail Blazers host the Chicago Bulls in the first of two games this month versus the Eastern Conference club. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

SERIES HISTORY

ALL TIME: Trail Blazers lead, 65-61
PORTLAND HOME: Trail Blazers lead, 38-25
CHICAGO HOME: Bulls lead, 36-27
LAST PORTLAND WIN: 107-103, 11/29/19 (Portland)
LAST CHICAGO WIN: 113-88, 11/15/16 (Portland)
CURRENT WIN STREAK: Seven (Portland)

SERIES NOTES

• The Trail Blazers Jan. 5 game against the Bulls is the first of two meetings between Portland and Chicago this season. The Trail Blazers visit Chicago on Jan. 30.

LAST SEASON: The Trail Blazers won the season series against the Bulls in 2019-20, 2-0.

SEASON SWEEPS: The Trail Blazers have swept the season-series against the Bulls each of the last three seasons.

• Carmelo Anthony averaged 24.0 points (50.0% FG, 50.0% 3-PT, 87.5% FT), 9.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists in two games against the Bulls last season, including a 23 point, 11 rebound double-double on November 29. Anthony has scored at least 20 points in 10 of his last 12 outings against Chicago, and recorded a career-high six steals against the Bulls in 2013 while with the Knicks.

• In two games against Chicago last season, Damian Lillard averaged 20.5 points (46.4% FG, 26.7% 3-PT, 84.6% FT), 2.0 rebounds and 9.0 assists.

• Zach LaVine averaged 23.0 points (37.8% FG, 37.5% 3-PT, 70.6% FT), 3.5 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 1.50 steals in two games against the Trail Blazers last season. LaVine finished with 28 points on 8-of-24 shooting in his last matchup with Portland on Nov. 29, 2019, a career-best in scoring against the Trail Blazers.

• In two games against Portland last season, Wendell Carter Jr. averaged 14.0 points (50.0% FG, 66.7% FT), 9.0 rebounds, 1.0 assists and 1.5 steals.

MILESTONE WATCH: Terry Stotts (478 career victories) will move past Scott Skiles for 35th on the all-time NBA wins list with the Trail Blazers next victory.

MILESTONE WATCH: With his next made three pointer, Damian Lillard (1,799 career 3PM) will be the 18th player in NBA history to reach 1,800 career three-pointers. Kobe Bryant is next on the list with 1,827 career three-pointers.

LAST THREE GAMES

Game #6 - Golden State 137, Portland 122 — Jan. 3, 2021, Chase Center, San Francisco

The Trail Blazers fell to the Warriors, 137-122 behind a career-best 62 point effort from Stephen Curry ... The Trail Blazers received a season-high 46 points from the bench ... The Warriors shot a season-high 55.7% (49-of-88) from the field ... Damian Lillard recorded his fourth 30+ point game of the season, finishing with 32 points (10-24 FG, 6-15 3-PT, 6-7 FT), four rebounds and four assist ... His four 30+ point games lead the NBA as of Jan. 3 ... CJ McCollum added 28 points (10-23 FG, 2-8 3-PT, 6-8 FT), a season-high nine rebounds, five assists and two steals ... Enes Kanter finished with 24 points (8-12 FG, 8-10 FT) and 12 rebounds, becoming just the third bench player with a 20p/10r game ... Curry carried the Warriors with his 62 point outburst (18-31 FG, 8-16 3-PT, 18-19 FT), coupled with five rebounds and four assists ... Curry is the 27th player in NBA history to record a 60 point game ... James Wiseman recorded the first double-double of his career, finishing with 12 points and 11 rebounds.

Game #5 - Portland 123, Golden State 98 — Jan. 1, 2021, Chase Center, San Francisco

The Trail Blazers earned their first double-digit victory of the season, by way of a 123-98 win over the Golden State Warriors at Chase Center ... The Trail Blazers made 20-of-43 three-point attempts, reaching the 20 3PM mark for the seventh time in franchise history ... The Trail Blazers recorded a season-high 11 steals ... Damian Lillard paced Portland with 34 points (11-21 FG, 6-10 3-PT, 6-6 FT), four rebounds, eight assists and one steal ... CJ McCollum added 28 points (11-21 FG, 4-11 3-PT, 2-3 FT), one rebound, four assists and three steals ... Carmelo Anthony had 18 points (5-9 FG, 3-4 3PT, 5-5 FT) and five rebounds, passing Tim Duncan for 14th on the all-time scoring list... Anfernee Simons scored in double-figures for the first time this season, finishing with 11 points and six rebounds ... Stephen Curry led the Warriors with 26 points, eight rebounds and five assists ... Andrew Wiggins added 15 points and four rebounds ... Eric Paschall contributed 13 points on 5-of-7 shooting off the bench.

Game #4 - LA Clippers 128, Portland 105 — Dec. 30, 2020, STAPLES Center, Los Angeles

The Trail Blazers were handed their first road loss of the season, a 128-105 defeat at the hands of the LA Clippers at STAPLES Center ... The Clippers made 14- of-21 three-point attempts in the first half, contributing to a 76-57 halftime lead ... The Trail Blazers committed 19 turnovers ... CJ McCollum led the way for Portland with 25 points (8-17 FG, 7-11 3-PT, 2-2 FT), four rebounds, three assists and one steal ... Damian Lillard added 20 points (3-14 FG, 0-8 3-PT, 14-15 FT), five rebounds, four assists and one steal ... Carmelo Anthony had 15 points (3-5 FG, 9-10 FT), five rebounds and two assists off the bench ... Enes Kanter recorded his second straight double-double, finishing with 10 points and 10 rebounds ... Kawhi Leonard led the Clippers with 28 points, three rebounds and seven assists ... Paul George added 23 points (8-15 FG, 4-9 3-PT, 3-4 FT), 10 rebounds, seven assists and two steals ... Five players made at least two threes for the Clippers.

INJURY NOTES

Rodney Hood (left quad strain) is questionable and Zach Collins (left ankle stress fracture) is out for Tuesday’s game vs. Chicago.

For the Bulls, Ryan Arcidiacono (health and safety protocols), Chandler Hutchison (not with team - self isolating), Lauri Markkanen (health and safety protocols) and Tomas Satoransky (not with team - self isolating) are out.

BROADCAST NOTES

Tuesday’s game can be seen locally on NBC Sports Northwest. The game cam also be heard on Rip City Radio 620 AM and on all of the stations of the Deschutes Brewery Trail Blazers Radio Network.

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