Trail Blazers

Trail Blazers forward Robert Covington earns player of the game in win over Hornets

Trail Blazers

The Trail Blazers hit a franchise-record 24 three-pointers in Monday’s win over the Charlotte Hornets to help get them back in the win column and snap a four-game losing streak.

The national media was buzzing about Carmelo Anthony taking on the younger "Melo" in LaMelo Ball.

But it was the play of both Anthony and Robert Covington that changed the game for the Trail Blazers in Portland’s 123-111 victory.  

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In a night where the Blazers were on fire from three, Covington, a 32.0 percent three-point shooter this season, drained five of his seven attempts.

But like Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts said, RoCo was doing it all.

 

Robert was player of the game. He did a little bit of everything. He had a great shooting night. Defensively, he came up with steals, and rebounds, and blocks.

Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts said postgame

“I’m pretty sure it was his best game as a Blazer,” Stotts added. “He was just terrific and he played the entire fourth quarter.”

The 30-year-old veteran agreed with his coach.

“Overall, yeah,” Covington said of Monday’s performance being his best game in a Blazers uniform.

Covington finished with a season-high 21 points on 8-of-11 shooting and an efficient 5-of-7 from three.  

He also notched 10 rebounds for his third double-double of the season, to go along with 2 steals and 2 blocks.

But what Covington wants more than anything right now is to be consistent.

I’ve got to keep building off this, putting these types of games together. I can’t have drop offs. And I’ve got to keep the confidence. I’ve got to do the little things -- that’s my rhythm and routine – that’s what I’ve been working on a lot the past few days.

Robert Covington  

The Blazers starting power forward's energy on the defensive end elevated Portland’s team defense against the fast-paced Hornets. 

And when Charlotte went small, so did Portland.

With Covington and Anthony's ability to switch on ball screens that was a key piece in helping the Blazers slow down the Hornets in the second half. 

Just minutes into the third quarter, Covington had a plus-16 while the rest of the starters were a plus-4 or plus-1.

Heading into Monday's game, Covington was averaging 7.3 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 1.7 assists per game.

But his shot making against the Hornets is what Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard believes will make this team a lethal one.

It makes us a much better team especially when he’s getting his hand on balls and blocking shots and all of the things like that, but when he’s hitting threes and putting the ball on the floor and he’s making things happen, it makes us a dangerous team.

Trail Blazers six-time All-Star Damian Lillard

Plus, with the way teams are defending Lillard these days with defenders picking him full court or at least as soon as he crosses half court and sending bigs at him higher and higher, having Covington on the wing or in the corner to knock down threes is just what this team needs from him.