Trail Blazers vs Wizards Tuesday, 03/22/11 AT 07:00PM

Trail Blazers Regroup For Matchup With Wizards

03/21/11
  1. Written by: Grant Lucas  / avg. rating: 4.0

    Although they fell to the Los Angeles Lakers in the last five minutes of the game on Sunday, the Portland Trail Blazers still put together a 3-1 week. With those four games behind it, Portland (40-30) returns to action and the Rose Garden on Tuesday night, when the Washington Wizards (17-51) come to town. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 PM.

    Projected to start for the Trail Blazers are Nicolas Batum, Gerald Wallace, LaMarcus Aldridge, Wesley Matthews and Andre Miller.

    Portland took on the Lakers on Sunday night and seemed to be on track for an impressive victory over the red-hot, two-time defending champions.

    Spanning halftime, the Trail Blazers used a 15-0 run to jump out in front, maintaining that advantage throughout the second half. At the five-minute mark, the tables turned.

    Led by Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher, Los Angeles closed the game on a 16-6 rally to overtake Portland and seal the win.

    Batum notched a season-high 25 points, pouring in 19 of those before the intermission. Aldridge registered 18 points and six rebounds, while Rudy Fernandez chipped in with 10 points off the bench. Camby pulled in 10 boards and Wallace added nine points and nine rebounds.

    Portland, however, hit less than 39 percent of its shots, including a 6-for-25 mark from three-point range. Although the Trail Blazers held 45-35 and 17-9 advantages in overall and offensive rebounds, respectively, they fell short in other departments. The Lakers outscored the opposition 54-36 in the paint, while putting up a 19-6 margin in fastbreak points.

    The Wizards haven't fared quite as well as Portland, losing 13 of their last 15 games, including a six-game skid just before their matchup with the New Jersey Nets on Sunday.

    Washington trailed 56-39 just before the break, but rookie John Wall led a charge in the second half, scoring 14 points during that time frame, including two late jumpers to take the lead and the win.

    Wall finished with 26 points to go along with eight assists, six rebounds and four steals. JaVale McGee recorded 16 points and seven rebounds, Jordan Crawford added 21 points and Maurice Evans posted 15 points off the bench, as the Wizards shot 51.9 percent from the field.

    The Trail Blazers and Wizards last met in the nation's capital early on in the season. Portland wrapped up a four-game road trip in Washington, during which the Trail Blazers struggled. After dropping back-to-back games against the Philadelphia 76ers and New Jersey Nets as well as a game against the Boston Celtics, Portland needed a win to build off of.

    That win did not come, however, as the Trail Blazers shot just 33.3 percent from the field and were outscored 40-30 in the paint and 20-12 in transition. The Wizards sent Portland to its sixth straight defeat - its longest losing streak since the 2005-06 season.

    Brandon Roy led the way with 18 points, while Aldridge had 16 points and a game-high 15 rebounds. Miller added 12 points and seven assists and Batum finished with 11 points and six boards off the bench.

    Andray Blatche paced the Wizards with 19 points to go along with nine rebounds, McGee tallied 13 points and 10 boards and Wall contributed with 10 points of his own.

    Despite holding a 51-43 rebounding advantage, including 23-12 on the offensive end, Portland was limited to a season-low 10 third-quarter points and was held to without a field goal for nearly seven minutes in the fourth quarter, allowing the Wizards to overcome a 12-point deficit.

    Overall, Portland has won four out of the last six contests between these two clubs and seven of the last 10, allowing Washington to exceed 100 points just one time in the previous 11 matchups.

    In last year's two-game series, Aldridge led the Trail Blazers with 20.5 points per game, while Miller put up 18. Portland, however, averaged a season-low 84 points per game against Washington, shooting less than 39 percent from the floor and 17.2 percent from beyond the arc. The Wizards, on the other hand, hit nearly 45 percent of their attempts.

    Portland will be without Greg Oden and Elliot Williams, who are sidelined with knee injuries. Marcus Camby, who sprained his ankle late in the Laker game, is listed as questionable against Washington.

    Tuesday's game will air on Comcast SportsNet with Mike Barrett and Mike Rice, while Brian Wheeler and Antonio Harvey will have the call on 95.5 FM The Game.

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