NBA

Rodney Hood undergoes successful surgery to repair torn Achilles

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Rodney Hood undergoes successful surgery to repair torn Achilles

The Portland Trail Blazers announced Wednesday, veteran wing Rodney Hood has undergone successful surgery to repair his ruptured left Achilles tendon.

The surgery was performed by Dr. Richard Ferkel at the Southern California Orthopedic Institute earlier today.

It was on December 6th in the Blazers loss to the Lakers when Hood suffered the injury at the 3:27 mark of the first quarter

As of right now, the Blazers are saying there is no timetable for Hood’s return to basketball activity.

[RELATED]: Fans and NBA players send their love to Rodney Hood 

This season in 21 games, the 27-year-old averaged 11.0 points 3.4 rebounds, and 1.5 assists in 29.5 minutes per game.

Hood was having one of the best seasons of his career.  

His shooting percentage (50.6%), along with his three-point shooting percentage (49.3%) and rebounding average were all career highs.

 

What a win vs. Denver can mean for the Trail Blazers' psyche

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What a win vs. Denver can mean for the Trail Blazers' psyche

The Trail Blazers have played a total of 25 games.

Of those 25, the Blazers have won 10.

Of those 10, the Blazers have just ONE win over a team with a winning record. (That was against the Dallas Mavericks on October 27th when Portland still had a healthy Zach Collins for three quarters of the game.)

That could change on Thursday night in Denver.

But it won’t be easy.

The Nuggets are currently 14-8 on the season, which puts them fifth in the Western Conference standings.

The good news for the Blazers: The Nuggets have lost five of their last six.

After easily defeating the New York Knicks Tuesday night, 115- 87, the Trail Blazers felt good about blowing out a team they were expected to blow out.  

“It’s good to have wins like this because it’s a team that we desire to beat, a team that is inferior to us, we want to go out there and take care of business and we did exactly that,” Kent Bazemore said Tuesday night.

Now as the Blazers shift their focus to Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets, former Denver Nugget Carmelo Anthony offered up his thoughts on how significant it would be for the Blazers to come away with a win in the Mile High City.

It’s definitely an important game, being in the same conference, knowing what we’re trying to accomplish. You know those guys are coming in with a loss tonight, so I’m sure they’ll be ready in front of their home crowd. This will be a good one for us to go get on the road. -- Trail Blazers forward Carmelo Anthony  

Portland’s head coach Terry Stotts gave his opinion on Thursday’s matchup:

“They’re the same team that we played in the playoffs; we are not the same team, so it’ll be different. They are a good team. They are the same team that took us to game seven and they are at their place so it will be a challenge.”

As of Thursday morning, the Trail Blazers were three games out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the West.

The last the time Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum played in Denver was in their Game 7 victory back on May 12th, using that nostalgia could provide just enough boost for the Blazers to hand the Nuggets their third straight loss.
The Blazers know they are going to need to slow down Nikola Jokic.

Jokic is averaging 16 points, 10 rebounds, and 6.3 assists per game.

In Portland and Denver's first meeting of the season, which also happened to be the Blazers regular season opener, Jokic had 20 points and 13 rebounds despite getting into early foul trouble.

In the loss, Damian Lillard led the Blazers with 32 points and eight assists, while Hassan Whiteside had 16 points and 19 rebounds in his debut as a Trail Blazer.

This is a must for Whiteside on Thursday:

The 7-footer will have to do his best to get a hand in Jokic’s face when the Joker is out on the three-point line.

The Blazers tip-off their two-game, six-day trip, at 7:30pm PT Thursday.

Good thing Hassan Whiteside has a weight room in his house

Good thing Hassan Whiteside has a weight room in his house

Some may say it was just what the doctor ordered Tuesday night.

The Trail Blazers say it was good to get a win. 

The injury-riddled Blazers faced a team that is going through more trials and tribulations than they are: The NBA's worst team that is going through yet another coaching change. 

The Knicks were losers of nine-straight heading into their game vs. Portland. Make that 10 straight.

The Blazers blew out the New York Knicks 115-87 behind Damian Lillard’s 31 points and Hassan Whiteside’s large and in-charge presence.  

Whiteside started out the third quarter showing that he meant business against the Knicks. The Blazers starting center made his presence felt on both ends finishing with five blocks to go along with his 17 points and 15 rebounds. It was Whiteside's 16th double-double of the season. 

The Blazers big man was also doing what he could to get Lillard open on the perimeter. It’s been an ongoing discussion how Lillard has been in teacher mode to make sure Whiteside understands how to set a good screen for Lillard.

Versus the Knicks, Whiteside set those solid picks Lillard was looking for. In turn, those picks helped Lillard go 8-for-12 from deep.

“I like that Dame shot 80 percent from three tonight,” Whiteside said with a smile. “He can light it up and getting them downhill. And when he gets downhill like that and he started getting it going, I’m just trying to get him open.”

For the 7-footer, he emphasized after the game how important it was to lock up the W.

“It’s always good to get a win. Every night we can’t overlook a win, overlook anybody... It was a good way to close the home stretch,” Whiteside said. 

At the 4:39 mark of the third quarter, Lillard found Whiteside alongside the baseline and as Whiteside went up with the two-handed jam he was fouled from behind by Marcus Morris.  

Whiteside had explained what happened on the play: 

[Carmelo Anthony] threw it to Dame and he seen [Mitchell] Robinson jump for the shot block and I just went up with two hands because I didn’t know somebody was going to come from behind and whatever. It was a pretty good hit, but I got a weight room at my house, so it’s always good to have a weight room at your house.

“I just got excited,” Whiteside added while referencing his fist pump celebration after the play.    

After starting in his second straight game since Rodney Hood went down with a season-ending injury, Kent Bazemore emphasized how important Whiteside has been anchoring the team down low.

He’s been super important for us, especially when he protects the rim like he does, getting us extra possessions, playing with a lot of energy and anytime he’s out there flexing with both arms, you know the night’s going well for him. Tonight was a fun game for us in so many aspects, good for everything to kind of click. -- Kent Bazemore postgame on the importance of Hassan Whiteside  

Whiteside’s signature move as of late is him flexing on his opponent. That celebration move is now completely validated after finding out about the in-home weight room.

And when, Whiteside isn’t showing off his strength, he has been able to show of his length.

The Blazers used their length to their advantage against the lowly Knicks.

Whiteside played alongside Skal Labissiere for the first time this season. The Trail Blazers starting center said that Labissiere reminds him of Zach Collins and he wouldn’t mind seeing that lineup more often.

While Lillard agreed with Whiteside.

“With Skal and Whiteside out there, Skal moves pretty well and they had non-shooting bigs tonight and I think it worked because of those two reasons,” Lillard said.

The Blazers are going to need to use all their length and flexing on Thursday night in Denver as Portland faces Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets.

Instant Analysis: Damian Lillard cashes in as Blazers take it to Knicks

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Instant Analysis: Damian Lillard cashes in as Blazers take it to Knicks

It was bounce back time for the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday night with the New York Knicks in town.

Portland was looking to get back on track and what better team than the Knicks, who have the worst record in the league.

After taking a 10-point lead at the end of the first quarter, the Blazers never looked back. Portland’s biggest lead on the night was 32. 

FINAL BOX SCORE: Trail Blazers 115, Knicks 87  

Here are three quick takeaways from Tuesday’s win:  

1.  Dame dialed-in 

After discussing how the Blazers did not have a sense of urgency during Sunday’s loss to the Thunder, Damian Lillard came out on fire, hitting his first four shots. With 17-first quarter points, it looked like Lillard was making a statement. Besides Lillard and Hassan Whiteside, Portland’s starting unit didn’t have an efficient shooting night for the second game in a row. But, Lillard led his team to a victory after knocking down eight of his 12 three-point attempts.  

2. Knicks feast in the paint early

Through the first two quarters, the Knicks scored 28 points in the paint to the Blazers’ 16. Midway through the second, Portland threw a 2-3 zone at New York. The Knicks didn’t know how to handle the zone. Since Portland was able to build such a large lead early on, the Blazers didn’t need to go back to the 2-3. Coach Terry Stotts also played both Whiteside and Skal Labissire on the court at the same time. It was a night of different looks for Portland.  

3. Whiteside large and in charge

Hassan Whiteside started out the third quarter with a bang, gobbling up rebounds and taking it hard to the rim. The Blazers starting center also made his presence felt on the defensive end with five blocks on the night. Whiteside finished with 17 points on 7-of-11 shooting, to go along with his 15 rebounds.  

Up Next: The Trail Blazers now head out on a two-game road trip. First up, Portland will make a stop in Denver on Thursday night. The Blazers and Nuggets will tip-off at 6:30pm.

Be sure to check back throughout the night and tomorrow morning for analysis, articles, and videos from the players!

Pregame Notebook: Trail Blazers expect new energy from Knicks

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Pregame Notebook: Trail Blazers expect new energy from Knicks

The Trail Blazers are set to wrap-up their four-game homestand tonight.

Before the Blazers and Knicks tip-off at 7:00p.m. on NBC Sports Northwest and on the 'My Teams' App, Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts gave his thoughts on tonight’s matchup.

Coach Stotts thinks the Knicks will be playing with a sense of urgency and newfound energy playing for their new interim head coach Mike Miller.

They’ve had a couple of days in between games. They’ll be some new things implemented. After watching their Indiana game they had some new things in as well. So, it kind of puts a premium on knowing their personnel, their tendencies, what they like to do. The one thing a coaching change usually does is it brings a bump in energy. They’ve lost nine in a row so I expect them to play with a lot of urgency.  ---Terry Stotts pregame

Coach Stotts also mentioned that Pau Gasol is still in Spain rehabbing at the moment, but he should be back in Portland late next week and then they will figure out when Gasol will join the coaching staff.

HEAR FROM COACH STOTTS HERE:

How to watch, stream Trail Blazers vs Knicks tonight at 7pm

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How to watch, stream Trail Blazers vs Knicks tonight at 7pm

The Portland Trail Blazers (9-15) will look to bounce back against the New York Knicks (4-19) Tuesday night.

Portland is coming off a 108-96 loss to the Thunder Sunday night. Foul trouble, showing their frustrations, and poor shooting for the Blazers led to the loss.

While New York is going through its own issues. The Knicks have won just one road game all season. Last week, New York fired their head coach David Fizdale. The Knicks have named Mike Miller interim head coach.

You can watch all the action between the Blazers and Knicks on NBC Sports Northwest, the Official Network of the Portland Trail Blazers and you can stream the game on our website or by downloading the MyTeams app!

And, have you heard about Blazers Pass?

 

You can get 15 live Trail Blazers games, pre and postgame shows, and on-demand full-game replays with Blazers Pass! (Only available to fans located in Blazers Territory, pursuant to NBA rules and agreements. No TV provider required. Subscription Period: November 4, 2019 - April 16, 2020. Subscription auto-renews prior to start of next season.)

Don't miss any of the coverage of tonight's game:

4:30pm Blazers Game Day with Chad Doing

6:00pm Blazers Warm-Up

6:30pm Trail Blazers Pregame Show

7:00pm Trail Blazers vs. Kings

After the game catch Blazers Outsiders with hosts Joe Simons and Dan Marang!

And, full coverage of the game from Dwight JaynesJamie Hudson and our digital team. Follow us on social throughout the night for the latest updates. 

QUOTABLE

“Not playing well enough to win games – and it’s frustrating. The start of the game – pretty much the whole game – we weren’t making shots. And on our home floor we’ve got to bring energy into the game. Our crowd is out here showing up and the situation that we’re in, our urgency wasn’t where it needed to be. --- Damian Lillard after Sunday’s loss

Carmelo Anthony: "We'll be alright, we can’t shoot as bad as we shot"

Carmelo Anthony: "We'll be alright, we can’t shoot as bad as we shot"

It wasn’t pretty.  

The Trail Blazers went 36-of-100 from the field and 9-for-33 from three in Sunday's 108-96 loss to the Thunder.  

Portland's newest edition, Carmelo Anthony, who played in his 10th game with the Blazers Sunday, had one of his worst shooting nights with his new team. Melo went 4-of-18 from the field, including 1-of-5 from long distance and scored just nine points.

“We were just off, couldn’t make shots,” Anthony said postgame.

But, Melo also gave credit to OKC.

“I think those guys just came out ready to play. They had dropped two games to us already. It’s hard to be a team three consecutive times without them making adjustments.”

“Tonight we didn’t have the energy, they did,” he added.

Blazers head coach Terry Stotts wasn’t concerned with the perimeter shooting, but was upset about his team missing baskets around the rim.

 

We had fifty shots in the paint, didn’t really convert in the paint very well, obviously Dame [Lillard] and Melo struggled at least from a percentage standpoint. That’s going to happen from time to time. You give credit to their defense they played hard, they made it difficult, but I thought that to get fifty shots in the paint you have to convert more than 21. -- Blazers head coach Terry Stotts

For Melo, “missing shots” was the most frustrating part of the game.

“Everybody [was missing], everything was short. And then when you’re missing shots like that, shots that you’re supposed to make and you normally make it puts a lot of emphasis on the defensive end and it makes it tougher to try to get stops on the defensive end, because if you don’t put a lot of effort and energy into making one stop, and trying to make consecutive stops going up against a team like that, they way that they played tonight, you have to be on point with [your shots].”

The 17-year veteran is confident this Blazers squad will bounce back and won’t shoot this bad again.

“We’ll be alright. We’ll get in the gym tomorrow, watch some film, and we’ll figure it out… We can’t shoot as bad as we shot tonight. I don’t think we’ll continue to miss those shots."

Yes, Melo is probably correct -- the Blazers most likely won't shoot that bad again, but as Damian Lillard said, the team lacked a sense of urgency. So, what will it take to get back to playing Trail Blazer basketball? Portland lost a playmaker in Rodney Hood. Filling their final roster spot with someone who can create his own shot seems like a must, but as of right now Coach Stotts says there hasn't been any talk of roster moves. Not yet at least. 

Lucky for the Blazers and their current shooting woes, along with injury woes, the worst team in the league makes a stop in Portland Tuesday night. The Blazers and Knicks tip-off at 7:00pm. 

Chris Paul gets played by the "delay of game" game

Chris Paul gets played by the "delay of game" game

The Thunder may have won the battle against the Blazers on Sunday, but they haven't won the war. The Blazers are 2-1 against the Thunder this season, and if you count the game within the game, they're 3-1. 

As the old saying goes, "don't hate the player, hate the game."

On Friday, Chris Paul played the game with the Timberwolves. Minnesota was up 121-119 with 1.1 seconds left in the game and Karl-Anthony Towns at the line for two free throws. He missed the first one and that is when Chris Paul alerted officials to the fact that Jordan Bell had checked in with an untucked jersey. The refs called a delay of game on Minnesota, and since it was their second of the game it was a technical foul.

WATCH

The Thunder hit the free throw, making it a one-point game. Towns hit the next free throw to make it a two-point game, but the Thunder sent up a prayer and tied the game as time expired. If not for the delay of game technical the Thunder wouldn't have forced overtime. Oklahoma would go on to win the game, but it was all thanks to Chris Paul's vet savvy. 

That was Friday. On Sunday against the Blazers, he didn't play the game, the game played him. 

Paul was called for two delay of game penalties, resulting in a technical foul free throw for the Blazers. 

Paul called out the refs, saying they were "trying to prove an (expletive) point."

No, Chris. The Blazers were just playing the game you are a master of. Don't hate the player. Hate the game. 

 

Kent Bazemore starts: "It’s what I wanted, but not how I wanted it"

Kent Bazemore starts: "It’s what I wanted, but not how I wanted it"

The Trail Blazers played their first game since their starting small forward Rodney Hood went down with a season-ending Achilles injury. 

Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts turned to Kent Bazemore to fill the void left by Hood.  

Bazemore was dialed in early and looked up for the challenge.

The career 35.1 percent three-point shooter hit his first three three-pointers on the night, tying his season-high from deep.

“I thought Kent got off to a great start," Terry Stotts said. "He made his threes, had good activity defensively, I was surprised he was 3 for 11 because I thought he impacted the game, he was on Chris Paul a lot. I thought he did a nice job in the starting lineup.”  

Bazemore attributes his success to getting open looks as well as getting to play alongside the Blazers other starters: Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Carmelo Anthony, and Hassan Whiteside.

It’s good to be out there with that kind of firepower… When you’re on the floor with Dame and CJ, Melo, and Hassan, they’re going to attract a lot of attention. So, just being aggressive, guys closing out short, just being able to rise up and knock them down… I’m going to continue to let if fly. I’ve been a starter in this league before and there’s a lot of firepower in the first unit.  – Kent Bazemore

After a hot start for Bazemore, he cooled off on a night where the Blazers as a team struggled from the field most of the night.

The 30-year-old finished with nine points to go along with five rebounds and two assists.

It is Bazmeore’s energy and activity on both ends of the floor though that he has made at living at, and Sunday was no different.

“I’m not really a guy that needs the ball,” Bazemore said. “I just like to fly around, play a lot of defense, and just bring energy for the unit. The first go didn’t go as planned, but it’s a lot of things we can work on, make sure we’re successful with this change,” Bazemore said.

Oklahoma City got their first win in three tries against Portland this season.

In this new reality for the Blazers, Bazemore is going to be relied on heavily. In his last 10 games, he had played an average of 20.6 minutes per game. On Sunday night he played 36.

“I think he did good,” Melo said of Bazemore’s performance. “He’s going to have to continue to step up in that role and we’re going to rely on him to do a lot of things, and especially now with Rodney being out. We’re going to rely on him to do more, but he can do it, we know he can do it.”

Lillard mentioned how the Blazers missed Hood's impact on the game, while Bazemore echoed that he and Hood are two very different players, but that’s why it worked so well for them to sub in for each other.

What he brings to the table is a lot different from what I bring. This is why we complemented each other so great, but I came here to play with these guys and get an opportunity to go out there and start. It’s what I wanted, but not how I wanted it. I’m just going to continue to work hard, continue to figure it out, go home tonight and watch the game, see if I can do some things a little bit better to help my teammates. 

“Rodney was a huge part of it what we did. We’ll figure it out,” Bazemore added.

The Blazers next opportunity to figure it out will be Tuesday night when they host the 4-19 New York Knicks. 

Instant Analysis: A tough shooting night plagues Blazers vs. Thunder

Instant Analysis: A tough shooting night plagues Blazers vs. Thunder

In the third meeting between the Trail Blazers and Thunder this season, both teams got out to a very slow start on Sunday night. At the end of the first quarter, Oklahoma City held a 21-20 lead.  

Blazers head coach Terry Stotts inserted Kent Bazemore into the starting lineup at small forward with the Blazers playing in their first game without Rodney Hood who suffered a torn left Achilles tendon on Friday night.

After being down by as many as 18 points in the first half, Portland charged back to take the lead in the third quarter. Yet, it was all Thunder in the final minutes of the fourth as OKC wins its first game against Portland this season.

FINAL BOX SCORE: Thunder 108, Trail Blazers 96  

Here are three quick takeaways from the Blazers loss:

1.  Rough shooting night

With Damian Lillard and Carmelo Anthony shooting a combined 4-of-20 at halftime, the Blazers were lucky to be down just eight heading into the third quarter. As a team, there were a lot of shots that were in and out in the first half for Portland. Melo missed a lay-in that looked halfway down the basket before it popped out. It was one of those nights where things were not going right offensively. CJ McCollum was one of the only Trail Blazers who found his rhythm from start to finish on Sunday.

2. Bazemore stepping into starting role

In this new reality for the Blazers, Bazemore is going to be relied on more on the offensive end. He delivered on Sunday night. He was ready to step into the starting role. Bazemore was a perfect 3-for-3 from three in the first half and he was still his usual active self on the defensive end all night.

3. Portland’s frustrations come out

In the final seconds of the second quarter, Carmelo Anthony was hit with a technical after missing a lay-in and arguing with the referee because he thought he got fouled on his way to the rim.  Then with just over seven minutes left in the third quarter, Kent Bazemore earned a technical foul for yelling at an official after being charged with a personal foul.

Up Next: The Trail Blazers will wrap-up their four-game homestand on Tuesday night with the New York Knicks in town. The Blazers and Knicks will tip-off at 7:00pm on NBC Sports Northwest and the MyTeams App.

Be sure to check back throughout the night and tomorrow morning for analysis, articles, and videos from the players!