Trail Blazers vs Jazz Saturday, 02/02/13 AT 07:00PM

Postgame Notes And Quotes: It's A Draw

  1. Written by: sarahhecht

    Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013    Final Score: Portland 105, Utah 99



    “Our bench played well. I’m happy for Nolan that he came in and did a terrific job of playing defense and making his shots and playing like he knows he can. It was just a win we needed. Looking at the back to back with Utah, this was a big back to back series. We’d love to have them both, but getting one, especially at home, is pretty good.”

    On offensive success in second half:
    “It was just a little bit of everything. I think our passing was good. We got mixed lineups where we had a shooting lineup and a big lineup. Threes were available. Our interior passing was good. I wouldn’t say generally it was one thing or another. We took what was there.”

    On bench performance:
    “I’ve said all along I think a lot of times we look too much at the points. Our bench, I don’t think it needs to be defined by scoring. Tonight we got some scoring off the bench. Noland and Luke and Will scored, but I’m not going to define their play, whether it’s good or bad, by how many points they scored… The bench played very well. With Wes out, Sasha out, Ronnie out, it gave those guys an opportunity and they played well.”

    “I thought guys off the bench played big down the stretch. Nolan was big tonight. Will was really big for us tonight too.”

    On bench play:
    “It was big for us. I thought guys stepped up tonight. Like I said, I thought Will came in early in the game and I think we were down 10 and we tied it up after that. Guys played well tonight.”

    “Try to take care of home court and try to bounce back after that loss.”

    On importance of upcoming 6-game road trip:
    “Make or break out season, really. We play a lot of guys in the West and a lot of guys we’re going to be fighting for so this road trip is big for us.”

    On turnover to start the game followed by good performance:
    “I had to get it out the way. I had to get it out the way and Wes was the first to say, ‘Alright you got it out of the way, now go play. Be yourself and just loosen up and have fun.’ That’s what I did tonight. Coach told me to play the way I’ve been practicing and let loose, play defense, obviously take care of the ball and everything else will fall into place.”

    On feeling after the game:
    “It feels good. It definitely feels good. I think coach feels good about it as well. He gave me a smile at the end of the game. To give coach confidence and obviously to give myself confidence as well, now I’m just excited to get back on the court next game and continue to get better.”

    Do you consider this the best game of your career?
    “I think for the time that it came and the situation where we needed a win against Utah, I definitely say it would be. It feels great to get this win.”

    On bench players mentality with Matthews out:
    “They knew they would be playing and on the court tonight. Vic, Will and Nolan really stepped up tonight. They did a good job.”

    On near-triple double numbers becoming regular:
    “I get points and assists very easily. It’s rebounds that are really tough to get.”
    “For me, to get a triple double, the hardest part is rebounds.”

    On people starting to expect triple doubles:
    “I know that. If we win the game, I’m ok. If we win the game and I get a triple double, I’m more than ok.”


    - Series history … With their victory tonight, the Trail Blazers snapped a five-game losing streak to the Jazz … Utah leads the all-time series with Portland 91-72, with the Trail Blazers holding a 55-27 edge at home.

    - Coming back … Portland now leads the league with 11 wins this season when trailing at halftime (11-16) … The Trail Blazers are 7-5 at home when down at half … Portland won for the ninth time this year when trailing by double figures, tied for the second-most in the NBA.

    - Sweet shooting … The Trail Blazers shot 50.7 percent from the floor tonight, improving to 8-0 this season when shooting 50.0 percent or better.

    - League leader … JJ Hickson finished with 21 points and 11 rebounds, his 26th double-double of the season … That ranks tied for third in the NBA … Hickson has scored at least 11 points and shot at least 50.0 percent from the field in 10 straight games, tied for the third longest streak in the NBA this season.

    - Buckets … Hickson has scored at least 11 points in each of the last 10 games, tied for the longest such streak of his career.

    - Career best … Nicolas Batum finished with a double-double, scoring 12 points and grabbing 10 rebounds … Batum also recorded a game-high nine assists … Batum’s seven double-doubles this season are a new career high.

    - Season highs … Nolan Smith finished with a season-high 12 points, also setting season bests in made field goals (5) and 3-pointers (2).

    - Fewer than five … The Trail Blazers won despite its opponent recording five or fewer turnovers for the first time since Dec. 10, 2006 at Toronto.

    - Off the bench … Trail Blazers reserves scored 28 points … That’s the most points scored off the bench since the squad scored 35 points Dec. 28 at the L.A. Lakers.

    - Downtown … Portland shot 55.6 percent from 3-point range (10-of-18) … That mark is the team’s second-best shooting percentage from beyond the arc this season (66.7%, 16-24, 1/5 at MIN), and the third time in 2012-13 that the Trail Blazers have shot better than 50.0 percent from downtown.

    - Attacking the glass … Portland grabbed 39 defensive rebounds tonight, tied for the team’s most defensive boards in regulation this season.

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