Game Notes: Memphis Grizzlies (2-1) vs. Portland Trail Blazers (1-2)
MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES (2-1) vs. PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS (1-2)
Wednesday, October 27, 7:00 p.m. (Pacific)
Moda Center, Portland, Oregon
ALL TIME: Trail Blazers lead, 52-42
PORTLAND HOME: Trail Blazers lead, 28-19
AT MEMPHIS: Trail Blazers lead, 24-23
LAST PORTLAND WIN: 130-109, 4/28/21 (Memphis)
LAST MEMPHIS WIN: 120-113, 4/25/21 (Portland)
CURRENT WIN STREAK: One (Portland)
• Wednesday's game is the first of four meetings this season between the Trail Blazers and the Grizzlies.
• LAST SEASON: Memphis won the season season against Portland in 2020-21, 2-1.
• In three games against the Grizzlies last season, CJ McCollum averaged 25.0 points (53.8% FG, 46.2% 3-PT, 87.5% FT), 5.0 rebounds and 5.3 assists.
• Damian Lillard averaged 24.3 points (34.4% FG, 30.0% 3-PT, 90.9% FT), 4.0 rebounds and 5.0 assists in three games against Memphis in 2020-21.
• In three games against the Grizzlies last season, Jusuf Nurkic averaged 19.0 points (57.9% FG, 100% 3-PT, 80.0% FT), 15.0 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.33 blocks.
• Norman Powell averaged 18.0 points (48.8% FG, 25.0% 3-PT, 84.6% FT), 4.0 rebounds and 3.3 assists in three games against the Grizzlies with the Trail Blazers last season.
• In three games against Portland last season, Ja Morant averaged 23.7 points (51.2% FG, 54.5% 3-PT, 80.8% FT), 5.3 rebounds and 8.0 assists.
• Dillon Brooks averaged 20.3 points (48.9% FG, 40.0% 3-PT, 91.7% FT), 4.0 rebounds and 1.00 steal in three games against the Trail Blazers in 2020-21.
• CONNECTION: Portland guard/forward Norman Powell and Memphis guard/forward Kyle Anderson were teammates at UCLA for two seasons from 2012-14.
• CONNECTION: Trail Blazers assistant coach Roy Rogers played for the Grizzlies as a rookie in Vancouver in 1996-97, which was the second season for the franchise.
NEWS AND NOTES
LEADING THE WAY: The Trail Blazers hired Chauncey Billups as the 15th head coach in franchise history on June 27, 2021. Billups is making his debut as a head coach in the 2021-22 season. He spent the 2020-21 season as an assistant coach for the LA Clippers, helping lead the team to a 47-25 record and a trip to the Western Conference Finals.
NBA 75th ANNIVERSARY TEAM: Damian Lillard was named to the NBA 75th Anniversary Team on Oct. 21. He joins former Trail Blazers Bill Walton, Clyde Drexler, Scottie Pippen, Carmelo Anthony, and Lenny Wilkens on the list.
LETTING IT FLY: The Trail Blazers attempted 50 three-pointers (made 21) against the Suns on Oct. 23. It was the fifth time in franchise history that Portland attempted at least 50 shots from deep
TOP 100 SCORER: With his 13th point against the Kings on Oct. 20, Damian Lillard moved past Elton Brand for 100th on the NBA all-time scoring list. Lillard has played the fewest games of anyone on the list (683).
CJ SCORING: CJ McCollum scored the 10,000th point of his career on Oct. 20 against the Kings. He is the eighth player in team history with 10,000 points. With his final basket of the night, McCollum passed Jim Paxson for seventh on the franchise scoring list. He needs 15 points to pass Jerome Kersey for sixth.
NEW IN TOWN: During the 2021 offseason, the Trail Blazers added Tony Snell, Dennis Smith Jr., Ben McLemore, Trendon Watford and Cody Zeller via free agency, Larry Nance Jr. via trade and Greg Brown III via the 2021 NBA draft. McLemore (53.0%), Snell (54.4%) and Zeller (58.5%) have all started over half of their career games since being drafted in the 2013 NBA Draft, while Nance has started 123 of his 350 career games (35.1%).
RETURNING PLAYERS: The Trail Blazers are returning nine players from their 2021 Playoff roster. Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Norman Powell, Robert Covington, Jusuf Nurkic, Anfernee Simons, Nassir Little, CJ Elleby and Keljin Blevins combined to play 58.1% of Portland's regular season minutes during the 2020-21 season.
DISRUPTIVE FRONTCOURT: Robert Covington and Jusuf Nurkic are two of the five NBA players that have averaged at least 1.00 steal and 1.00 block in each of the last two seasons. Covington is one of three players (A. Davis/A. Drummond) that have done so each of the past three seasons. Joining the Portland pair this season is forward Larry Nance Jr., who has averaged at least 1.00 steal in each of the last five seasons.
CONSISTENT EXCELLENCE: Damian Lillard scored 19 points (6-8 FG, 5-7 3-PT, 2-2 FT) against the Warriors in Portland's first preseason game on Oct. 4. Lillard is one of two players (L. James) who has averaged at least 25.0 points in each of the last six seasons.
RIGHT BACK AT IT: Damian Lillard (19 points, 5-7 3-PT), CJ McCollum (12 points, 2-4 3-PT) and Norman Powell (13 points, 2-5 3-PT) each played 18 minutes or less against Golden State on Oct. 4, but were back in their 2020-21 form. The trio are three of the 12 players that averaged at least 18.0 points and 2.5 three-pointers in 2020-21 while shooting better than 39.0% from the three-point-line.
BACKCOURT BUCKETS: Anfernee Simons scored 24 points (8-20 FG, 1-9 3-PT, 7-7 FT) against the Kings on Oct. 11. He has topped 24 points three times in a regular season game in his career. His career high for free throws is four (seven times). Off the bench, Dennis Smith Jr. pitched in 18 points and seven assists in 26 minutes.
MANNING THE MIDDLE: Jusuf Nurkic logged a double-double of 15 points (5-8 FG, 2-4 3-PT, 3-4 FT) and 10 rebounds to go with four assists against the Warriors on Oct. 11. His two three-pointers were the most he has made in a game in his career (preseason, regular season and postseason).
LAST FIVE GAMES
Game #3 - LA Clippers 116, Portland 86 — October 25, 2021, STAPLES Center, Los Angeles
The Trail Blazers lost their first road game of the season at the hands of the Clippers, 116-86, at STAPLES Center ... Portland committed 30 turnovers while the Clippers recorded assists on 37 of their 44 field goals ... CJ McCollum led the Trail Blazers with 20 points (7-16 FG, 4-11 3-PT, 2-2 FT) to go with four rebounds, four assists, two steals and one block ... Starting in place of an injured Normal Powell, Nassir Little had 10 points (4-7 FG, 2-4 3-PT), four rebounds, one assist, two steals and two blocks in 32 minutes ... Damian Lillard had 12 points, three rebounds and three assists in 28 minutes ... Anfernee Simons led the Portland reserves with 12 points (5-13 FG, 1-6 3-PT, 1-1 FT), four rebounds and one assist ... The Clippers were led by 23 points from Luke Kennard on 8-of-10 shooting (6-7 3-PT, 1-1 FT) ... Reggie Jackson scored 18 points (6-20 FG, 3-15 3-PT, 3-4 FT) ... Paul George had 16 points (6-16 FG, 2-8 3-PT, 2-2 FT), five assists, a career-high eight steals and one block in 27 minutes.
Game #2 - Portland 134, Phoenix 105 — October 23, 2021, Moda Center, Portland, Oregon
The Trail Blazers earned their first win of the season by defeating the Suns at Moda Center, 134-105 ... The victory marked the first win as a head coach for Chauncey Billups ... The Trail Blazers connected on 21 of their 50 three-point attempts ... CJ McCollum had a game-high 28 points (10- 29 FG, 6-11 3-PT, 2-2 FT) to go with three rebounds, one assist and three blocks ... Damian Lillard added 19 points and eight assists ... Anfernee Simons scored 18 points off the bench on 7-of-14 shooting (4-8 3-PT) to go with three rebounds and one assist ... Norman Powell had 16 points (6-8 FG, 2-4 3-PT, 2-2 FT) and two rebounds in 12 first-half minutes before exiting the game with a left knee injury ... Jusuf Nurkic had nine points, 12 rebounds and three assists ... Devin Booker paced the Suns with 21 points, four rebounds and four assists in 28 minutes.
Game #1 - Sacramento 124, Portland 121 — October 20, 2021, Moda Center, Portland
The Trail Blazers lost their season-opener to the Kings, 124-121, at Moda Center ... Portland trailed by as many as 18 points in the fourth quarter before narrowing the gap to one point with 11.1 seconds remaining in the game ... The Trail Blazers outrebounded Sacramento, 49-43, and outscored the Kings in the paint, 58-46 ... CJ McCollum led the Trail Blazers with 34 points (14-24 FG, 6-11 3-PT) to go with six rebounds, five assists and three steals ... McCollum scored the 10,000th point of his career with a three-pointer at the 9:27 mark of the fourth quarter ... Damian Lillard had 20 points (8-24 FG, 0-9 3-PT, 4-5 FT), six rebounds and 11 assists in 40 minutes ... With his 13th point (5:34 3rd quarter), Lillard moved past Elton Brand for 100th on the all-time NBA scoring list ... Harrison Barnes led the Kings with a career-high 36 points to go with nine rebounds and two assists.
Preseason Game #4 - Golden State 119, Portland 97 — October 15, 2021, Chase Center, San Francisco
The Trail Blazers lost their preseason finale to the Warriors, 119-97, at Chase Center ... The Warriors outscored Portland, 43-26, in the third quarter to break the game open ... CJ McCollum scored 26 points (11-22 FG, 4-11 3-PT) to go with one rebound, four assists and two steals for the Trail Blazers ... Jusuf Nurkic recorded a double-double of 11 points (4-13 FG, 3-3 FT), 10 rebounds, three assists and two blocks ... Norman Powell scored 18 points on 7-of-18 shooting (2-6 3-PT, 2-2 FT) to go with five rebounds ... Robert Covington had 10 points, five rebounds, one steal and three blocks in 28 minutes ... CJ Elleby led the Portland bench with nine points (4-9 FG, 1-5 3-PT) ... Stephen Curry had a game-high 41 points (13-23 FG, 7-14 3-PT, 8-10 FT) to go with nine rebounds and two assists for the Warriors ... Jordan Poole chipped in 16 points, three rebounds and one assist.
Preseason Game #3 - Phoenix 119, Portland 74 — October 13, 2021, Footprint Center, Phoenix
Portland fell to 0-3 on the preseason with a 119-74 road loss to the Suns in Phoenix ... The Trail Blazers were held to 29.8% shooting from the field and 15.4% shooting from the three-point-line ... Damian Lillard led the way for Portland with 12 points (5-11 FG, 1-6 3-PT, 1-2 FT) to go with two rebounds and two assists ... Jusuf Nurkic had a game-high 13 rebounds to go with eight points and two steals ... Robert Covington scored 10 points and added six rebounds and three steals ... CJ McCollum had 10 points and four assists ... Dennis Smith Jr. had nine points to lead the Portland reserves, including seven free throws (of 10) ... Devin Booker paced the Suns with 17 points (6-10 FG, 3-6 3-PT, 2-2 FT) to go with three rebounds and one assist ... Deandre Ayton had eight points and 11 rebounds in 15 minutes of action.
For the Trail Blazers, Norman Powell (left patellar tendinopathy) is questionable and Tony Snell (right foot sprain) is out for Wednesday's game vs. Memphis.
As for the Grizzlies, Dillon Brooks (left hand; fracture recovery) is out.
Wednesday’s game can be seen locally on ROOT Sports with Kevin Calabro, Lamar Hurd and Brooke Olzendam calling the action. On the radio side, Travis Demers, Michael Holton and Jay Allen will have the call on Rip City Radio 620 AM and on all of the stations of the Deschutes Brewery Trail Blazers Radio Network.
The Trail Blazers and Rose Quarter are requiring all guests ages 12 and up attending any event at the Rose Quarter, including Winterhawks games, to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or provide proof of either a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of the event or a negative lab-based rapid test taken within 48 hours of the event. At-home tests will not be accepted.
Kids under age 12 can come to events without proof of vaccination or proof of a negative test unless sitting within 15 feet of the court and benches at a Trail Blazers game. All guests must wear a mask at all times while on the Rose Quarter campus.
Click here for more information on Moda Center’s health and safety protocols.