Trail Blazers vs Bobcats Saturday, 03/05/11 AT 07:00PM

Portland Entertains Bobcats In Brief Homestand

03/04/11
  1. Written by: Grant Lucas  / avg. rating: 5.0

    With a win under their belts, the Portland Trail Blazers (34-27) look for a similar outcome when they return to the Rose Garden to take on the Charlotte Bobcats (26-35) on Saturday night. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 PM.

    Projected to start for Portland are Nicolas Batum, LaMarcus Aldridge, Marcus Camby, Wesley Matthews and Andre Miller.

    Matthews recorded 11 of his team-high 21 points in the fourth quarter of Wednesday's game against the Sacramento Kings to help Portland pull away and seal a 107-102 road victory. Aldridge put up 20 points and 10 rebounds, Miller contributed with 19 points and six assists and Batum tallied 17 points.

    After a few games of defensive lapses, Portland clamped down to register 25 points of 16 King turnovers. Four of those Sacramento giveaways occurred within the last four minutes of the game, allowing the Trail Blazers to pull away.

    Charlotte, on the other hand, has dropped three consecutive games, most recently against the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night.

    Three Bobcats scored in double figures, led by D.J. Augustin, who finished with 22 points, four assists and six rebounds. Shaun Livingston added 12 points off the bench, while D.J. White tallied 11 points and seven boards as a reserve.

    While neither squad lit it up from the field - both shot less than 40 percent from the floor - the Laker pulled away in the opening quarter with a 17-2 run. Charlotte never really recovered, losing leading scorer Stephen Jackson to a hamstring injury in the third period.

    In this series between the Trail Blazers and Bobcats, Portland has taken three consecutive matchups, holding Charlotte to less than 80 points in each game.

    The Bobcats averaged just 76.5 points during last year's two-game series, shooting less than 39 percent from the field.

    Seven Trail Blazers poured in double-digit scoring averages, paced by Brandon Roy, who tallied 25 points in one appearance. Jackson led Charlotte with 23 points in his only game against Portland.

    Portland has defeated the Bobcats by 13.4 points per game in its eight victories of the overall series, while Charlotte has never won by double digits.

    Joel Przybilla and Dante Cunningham, who were sent to the Bobcats in exchange for Gerald Wallace on Feb. 24, will make their homecoming debut at the Rose Garden.

    Sidelined for the Trail Blazers are Greg Oden and Elliot Williams, who are recovering from knee injuries.

    Saturday's showdown will air on Comcast SportsNet with Mike Barrett and Mike Rice on the call, while Brian Wheeler and Antonio Harvey will have the play-by-play on 95.5 FM The Game.

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