Aside from an early second quarter run from Orlando, this game was all Portland and never looked to be in doubt. The Magic shot the ball horrendously, from all levels, and the Blazers were able to hop on the backs of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum to cruise to an easy win.
Lillard led all scorers with 36 points to go along with 6 assists and McCollum wasn’t far behind with 31 points and 8 rebounds. It was the second game in a row where the pair each scored 30 or more points and an NBA record for guards 15th time overall.
Portland improves to 13-16, and along with losses by the Suns, Kings and Timberwolves, moves into the 8th place in the West.
Melo banged up. Carmelo Anthony went to the locker room in the second quarter and didn’t return with what the team later called a “left knee contusion” after playing just nine minutes. There didn’t look to be an obvious play where it occurred, so it doesn’t seem to be too serious, and he was only listed as “questionable” the rest of the way. The Blazers are probably just being careful with the 35-year-old on the first night of a back-to-back. Still, it will be something to pay attention to.
On my block. Portland has been a terror to opponents blocking shots lately, and tonight they added 10 more led by Hassan Whiteside, who had four swats and his sixth game with multiple blocks in a row. He’s got 23 rejections in that streak, which doesn’t even include the ridiculous 10(!) he had against the Bulls on Nov. 29, which was a franchise record. Melo had three of his own before exiting the game early, but sadly ended his streak of games with multiple steals at six.
The Blazers are back at it again tomorrow night against the Minnesota Timberwolves.