Blazers Wrap Up Back-To-Back Versus Mavs With Another Loss

by Casey Holdahl
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PORTLAND -- Maybe it’s best that the Trail Blazers are heading back out for another week-long road trip.

After returning home from a 4-2 road trip, the Trail Blazers dropped back-to-back games at home in their return to Moda Center, the most recent being a 132-112 loss to the Dallas Mavericks in front of a crowd of 16,334 Wednesday night.

“Got off to such a tough start,” said Trail Blazers head coach Chauncey Billups. “You give up 40 points in the first quarter, that’s really tough. It’s tough to absorb that type of quarter but I thought, second quarter, we got back in it obviously. Just fighting up hill all night, it was tough to kind of come back.”

The Trail Blazers are now 20-28 overall, 14-13 at home and 0-2 versus the Mavericks this season.

Portland found themselves down 8-0 less than two minutes into the game, and though they managed to settle in before things got too out of hand, they were outscored 25-10 between the 8:18 and 1:57 marks of the first quarter to go down 34-17.

The Blazers would spend the better part of the next two quarters fighting their way back into the game and when they cut the Mavericks’ lead to 78-74 after an Anfernee Simons three with 5:57 to play in the third, it seemed as though the stage might be set for a dramatic finish.

But the game would go in the opposite direction. Dallas would rattle off an 18-4 run to over the next five minutes to take their largest lead of the night at 98-80 with 46.3 seconds to play in the third quarter. The Blazers, playing on the second night of a back-to-back and without the services of Robert Covington and Nassir Little, never mustered much of a challenge thereafter.

“Momentum is pretty much everything,” said Billups. “We got it down, it took us so much energy to get it there, so you really got to kind of be able to push through that. We weren’t able to.”

Anfernee Simons finished with 23 points on 9-of-14 shooting, seven assists and two rebounds in 36 minutes. CJ McCollum went 8-of-16 from the field and 4-of-10 from three for 20 points to go with six rebounds and four assists.

Norman Powell, in his second game back after an extended absence due to COVID and personal reasons, finished with 19 points, nine rebounds and an assist in just under 36 minutes. Jusuf Nurkic posted 18 points, eight rebounds and three assists in 30 minutes.

Luka Doncic posted a triple-double with 15 points, 15 assists and 10 rebounds in 37 minutes. Kristaps Porzingis went for 22 points while Dwight Powell and Reggie bullock each added 15.

After a 72 hour layover in Portland, the Trail Blazers now head out for a four-game trip starting with a contest Friday night versus the Rockets in Houston. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

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