Brandon Roy scored 20 points, and LaMarcus Aldridge chipped in 19 points and 10 rebounds as the Portland Trail Blazers beat the Los Angeles Clippers 98-88 to improve to 2-0.
Blake Griffin, still classified as a “rookie” after missing the entire ’09-’10 season with a knee injury, scored 20 points and grabbed 14 rebounds in his first session of regular season NBA action.
Third-year guard Eric Gordon led Los Angeles in scoring with 22 points, while reserve Rasual Butler chipped in 16, including 4-6 shooting from three-point range.
Portland, playing the second of a season-opening back-to-back, was able to pull away in the fourth quarter after a back-and-forth battle for most of the night.
All five Blazers starters scored in double figures.
The Clippers’ efforts certainly weren’t helped by the offensive struggles of former All-Stars Baron Davis and Chris Kaman, who combined to score 16 total points on just 7-29 shooting from the field.
Los Angeles was out-rebounded by 10, as three Blazers (Roy, Aldridge, and Marcus Camby) each pulled down at least 10 boards. Portland grabbed a whopping 21 of those rebounds on the offensive end.
The Clippers did a nice job defending Roy in the second half, limiting him to 0-8 shooting from the floor.
Los Angeles led 78-74 early in the fourth quarter, but it was all Portland from there.
Portland then went on a 15-0 run, including seven from Aldridge, and never looked back.
The Trail Blazers switched from man to zone defense in the fourth, and the Clippers’ offense was bogged down, resulting in several possessions with little ball movement and questionable shot selection.
The 0-1 Clippers travel to Oakland to face the Golden State Warriors Friday night.
About the Author
Written by Taylor Smith
Taylor Smith is a writer for the Los Angeles Clippers.