Trail Blazers vs Pistons Saturday, 03/16/13 AT 07:00PM

Postgame Notes And Quotes: Crucial Home Win

  1. Written by: sarahhecht

    Saturday, March 16, 2013    Portland 112, Detroit 101  

     “Well I liked how we tightened things up the beginning of the second half. Our defense was noticeably better and much more connected and much more aggressive. I thought that really set the tone for the second half. Other than the last four minutes of the game where they got some transition baskets off of our misses when they went to the zone, but other than that, for 20 minutes of the second half, our defense was pretty good. Needless to say, I was very disappointed with our defense in the first half.”

    Describing Aldridge’s game after early foul trouble:
    “Remarkable. I mean, he told me he needs to get two fouls early more often. He had it going. He created a problem on the block all night whether he was scoring, passing, making his jump shot, rebounding. When he sat out in the first quarter and we were struggling, he came back into the game pretty aggressive for the rest of the night.”

    On Freeland’s contribution off the bench
    “Joel’s been working really hard. Detroit plays two big guys. They don’t really space the floor with a three point shooter. Before LA getting two fouls, I had planned on getting Joel in the game in tonight. It was just earlier than expected because of the fouls. I thought this was a game that kind of was set up for him to play. They played a little conventional with their big guys and it just seemed to make sense. I thought he did very well. He made things happen. He finished around the basket and he played with some energy. I don’t know when the last time he played was, but he was ready. I compliment his work ethic because he’s been putting in a lot of time before and after practice and before games and he’s been waiting for an opportunity and he was ready.”

    On Lillard only taking 12 shots
    “He was reading the plays. They were aggressive on his pick and rolls and they weren’t really giving him alleys to the basket. That’s part of his job, to read the plays. I thought he had good decisions. He had only a couple turnovers.”

    On 2-1 home stand:
    “We win two of them and Memphis was a good game, so I thought it was okay. There were parts of tonight’s game and the game against New York that were a little disconcerting defensively, but you can’t take anything for granted. I would have liked to have won all three obviously, but we played Memphis a tough game and got two more wins. Hopefully it’s a little momentum for us going on the road.”

    On defensive issues
    “I don’t think it’s effort. My main concern is probably focus. We’re making mistakes that we know better. Whether it’s gambling or not being alert on a play – I thought it was more mental than anything else as far as just being focused. I thought our movement and our alertness in the second half was very obviously. That was just really being in tune with what we were trying to get done.

    On poor shooting night but success of team:
    “I made plays, I played aggressive and every shot didn’t fall, but I thought we played good as a team. LA had a really good game, JJ had a good game, Nic had a good game, Wes had a good game and so did Joel. Because I can go down the line with so many good games, that’s the bigger thing for us, that and we were able to win the game.”

    On 10-0 for Detroit after they switched to zone in fourth quarter:
    “We got a couple good looks, we just didn’t make them. I know I got two good looks at threes and I didn’t make them so it was just that type of swing. We could have done a better job defensively by stopping their run, but I thought we just missed shots in the zone.”

    On upcoming road trip:
    “Our focus right now is the next game. We’re not looking at it like the whole trip as a whole. We take it one game at a time and every game is important. The only game we’re concerned about right now is the first one.”

    On defensive struggle in the first half:
    “I don’t think we lightened up, I just thing we aren’t on edge enough I guess. It’s early in the game, it’s a long game. We don’t do it on purpose, it’s just something we have to be better about as the year closes.”


    - Series history … The Trail Blazers have now won five meetings in a row with Detroit in Portland … Portland’s 112 points are the most scored against the Pistons since scoring 114 points at the Rose Garden on Dec. 29, 2000.

    - Big numbers … LaMarcus Aldridge finished with 31 points (13-of-21 FG) and 12 rebounds … Aldridge now has five games with at least 30 points, 10 rebounds and 50.0 percent shooting, tied with LeBron James for the most such games in the NBA this season … In two games against Detroit this season, Aldridge averaged 31.5 points and 11.0 rebounds on 25-for-43 field goal shooting (58.1%).

    - Elite company … Aldridge has joined LeBron James and Kevin Durant as the NBA’s only players with 1,300 points and 500 rebounds this season.

    - Double-double machines … Along with a double-double recorded by Aldridge, his 31st of the season, JJ Hickson finished with his 37th double-double of the year, scoring 18 points and grabbing 15 rebounds … Hickson is now tied for second in the NBA in double-doubles this season, and his 37 double-doubles this year are tied for the 14th-most by a Trail Blazer all time (S. Wicks).

    - Among the best … Hickson posted his 10th game with at least 15 points and 15 rebounds, tied for second-most in the NBA this season.

    - Coming back … The Trail Blazers recorded their 12th win this season when trailing at halftime … Portland improved to 8-8 this year when trailing at the break at home.

    - In the clutch … After going 23-for-24 from the foul line tonight, Portland has missed just one free throw in three of its past four games.

    - Sweet shooting … The Trail Blazers have tied or made more 3-pointers than their opponents in the last 12 games.

    - Season high … Rodney Stuckey finished with a season-high 32 points on 12-of-23 shooting.

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