This was the game that never truly began. The Blazers pulled ahead of the Hornets in the first quarter, and took care of business 127-96 against the clearly-inferior team. The Blazers blocked, dunked lobs over, and generally annoyed the Hornets for three quarters, and then it was garbage time with a 30+ point lead. There were few essentials from this game, but let’s pretend there were.
Red-and-Block Party. Everyone bring your own side dish, because the Moda Center attended a block party. The Blazers had 15 blocks to the Hornets’ 2. Jusuf Nurkic had 6 blocks, Meyers Leonard 3, and, yes, Damian Lillard had 4.
Almost-Triple-Double. After three quarters, Jusuf Nurkic was 2 assists away from a triple-double. So Terry Stotts left him in the game with the bench for a few minutes. That only led to a frustrated look from Nurkic as he headed to the bench. Great night anyway.
What CJ McCollum shooting woes? McCollum was a monster, scoring 30 points on 20 shots, including 5-11 from downtown, and a few nice offensive moves that left the Hornets lost and fluttering their wings.
We tease him a lot, ‘cause we got him on the spot, welcome back. Nicolas Batum got a warm ovation from the Blazers faithful, but he gave no reason for them to want him in red and black again. He finished 3-6 with 8 points. Don’t ask about his cost-per-point.
“Cupcake week”, featuring easy home games against the Knicks, Bulls, and Hornets, is now over. The Blazers head to Denver for a Sunday night game against the Nuggets.