It will be a matinee game Saturday as the Trail Blazers look to even up the series at two games apiece against the Denver Nuggets.
Following Thursday night’s 120-115 loss, Blazers head coach Terry Stotts was pleased with the interior defense after his team was outperformed from three.
“So the first two games, they scored in the paint, so we outscored them by a bunch in the paint,” Stotts said immediately following Game 3. “They scored inside in the first two games, they scored outside tonight. As long as they’re contested perimeter shots, we’ve got to live with that. The paint has been a priority and we did a good job with that. I think three point shooting can come and go but as long as we take away the paint, that’s the important thing.”
Both teams have been efficient from behind the arc. It just wasn't there for Portland in Game 3.
Denver is shooting 42.2% from three, while Portland is averaging 41.5% 3-PT, which ranks second and third in three-point percentage this postseason.
The Trail Blazers are - 4 point favorites against the Nuggets in Game 4 at Moda Center, odds provided by our partner PointsBet.
POINT SPREAD: -- Trail Blazers: -4 (-110) – Nuggets: +4 (-110)
HOW TO WATCH:
When: Saturday, May 29
Where: Moda Center | Portland, OR
Start time: 1:00 p.m. PT
TV channel: NBCSNW, the official network of the Portland Trail Blazers
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
The Blazers will be without Zach Collins (left ankle) for Game 3.
For the Nuggets, Will Barton (right hamstring; strain), PJ Dozier (right adductor; strain) and Jamal Murray (left ACL; surgery) are out.
Projected starting lineup:
For the Blazers –
- Damian Lillard
- CJ McCollum
- Norman Powell
- Robert Covington
- Jusuf Nurkic
For the Nuggets –
- Aaron Gordon
- Michael Porter Jr.
- Austin Rivers
- Nikola Jokic
- Frank Campazzo
What happened last time:
Game 3 at Moda Center Thursday night -- Denver 120, Portland 115
With the difference from behind the arc in Thursday night’s loss for Portland, the Nuggets got a boost from Austin Rivers, who drained four 3s in the final minutes. He finished the game with 21 points, 16 of which came in the fourth quarter.
Portland finished the game 14-of-45 from three compared to Denver's 20-of-38.
The Blazers outscored the Nuggets 54-30 in the paint, and 17-12 in second-chance opportunities.
In the loss, Damian Lillard led Portland with 37 points, two rebounds, five assists and two steals. Game 3 marked Lillard's 20th career postseason contest with at least 30 points. That is the most in franchise history.
Nikola Jokic led Denver with 36 points on 12-of-24 shooting, adding 11 rebounds and five assists.