Trail Blazers

Trail Blazers hold off Dallas Mavericks and improve to 16-10

Trail Blazers
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Sunday's game went down to the wire.

But thanks to Portland’s defensive effort in the second half in Dallas, the game shaped up to be yet another close one.  

The Blazers held a 34-25 lead at the end of the first quarter as Carmelo Anthony finished off the quarter with an emphatic dunk.

And even though the Blazers weren’t getting to the free-throw line, and many would argue they should’ve, they were getting it done from behind the arc.

But it was thanks to their stops in the third quarter that the Blazers took a 12-point lead heading into the final period.

With as many scorers as the Mavs have, the Blazers knew Dallas would not go away quietly. And after a 10-0 run from Dallas, Luka Doncic looked like a man on a mission.

However, it was Damian Lillard who drained a step-back three with 32.8 remaining to go up three. The Blazers then got a bucket from Derrick Jones Jr., with the assist from Carmelo Anthony.

 

And after Doncic wasn't able to convert on an open three, Portland defeated Dallas, 121-118. 

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The Blazers now improve to 16-10 and 8-5 on the road.

Despite getting into foul trouble, Lillard finished with 34 points and 11 assists.

FINAL BOX SCORE: Trail Blazers 121, Mavs 118 

The Good: 

As the Blazers have been able to do time and time again this season, the duo of Damian Lillard and Enes Kanter worked the pick and roll to their advantage against the Mavericks. Lillard wore down Kristaps Porzingis on the perimeter. 

Lillard kept the Mavs on their toes. He mixed it up, going to his step-back when the Mavs would switch out on him or he used his speed to blow by his defenders. Portland shot 52.9 percent for the game. 

The third quarter was all about the extra energy on the defensive end with both Derrick Jones Jr. and Gary Trent Jr. leading that charge. 

It was yet another team effort for the Trail Blazers to keep up with the high scoring Mavs.

The Bad: 

Luka Doncic, to nobodys surprise, went on a tear at the end of the first half and didnt let up.

At the 1:42 mark of the second quarter Luka Doncic drove to the hoop and was met with a hand in his face.

 

The call initially was a foul on Derrick Jones Jr., but after reviewing the play and Jones Jr.’s hand was nowhere near the ball, the call was upgraded to a Flagrant 1.

Doncic scored a quick five points that time down the floor. From that call on, he notched 11 points. He finished the first half with 24 and helped his team take a 61-58 halftime lead.

The Mavs were the aggressor from the jump. Dallas shot 12-of-12 from the free throw line in the first half.

Portland did not attempt a free throw until 2:27 of the second quarter when Enes Kanter finished a three-point play after Prozingis was hit with his second foul of the game.

The Blazers were 2-for-3 from the charity stripe in the first half.

Rodney Hood missed Sundays game with a left foot sprain.

Pregame, Trail Blazers discussed that as of right now there’s no real update on Hood.

The Blazers also lost big man Harry Giles to an apparent left leg injury late in the third quarter. He left the game and did not return.

The Highlight:

This Carmelo Anthony dunk had the Blazersbench on their feet at the end of the first quarter:

And it has CJ McCollum thinking one thing:

The Stat: 

Portlands second unit stepped up to fill the scoring load. The Blazers’ bench outscored the Mavericks second unit, 35-28.

 

Next up: Portland continues its three-game road trip Tuesday. The Blazers and Thunder will tip-off at 5:00p.m. PST on NBCSNW.