NBA Preview from The Sports Network|
Friday, November 15th
(All times Eastern)
Portland Trail Blazers (6-2) at Boston Celtics (4-5), 7:30 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Portland Trail Blazers have won four straight, but
they begin a four-game eastern trip, starting Friday with a stop at TD Bank
Garden to face the Boston Celtics.
The Blazers have been one of this season's early surprises. They own the
third-best record in the NBA behind the undefeated Indiana Pacers and
defending Western Conference champion San Antonio Spurs.
"We've got a chance to really pull away from some teams out here in the West,"
said guard Wesley Matthews. "We're playing good basketball and we feel
confident that we can beat any team that we play against. We feel confident on
the road. We've got to take care of home."
Portland's fourth straight victory came at the hands of another shocking team,
the Phoenix Suns. The Blazers hung on for 90-89 home victory as six Portland
players scored in double figures.
Thomas Robinson led the way with 15 points in just 16:36 of action. Robin
Lopez registered his third straight double-double with 13 points and 15
rebounds and LaMarcus Aldridge notched 12 points and 12 boards.
Matthews, Damian Lillard and Mo Williams also cracked the 10-point mark.
The Celtics saw their four-game winning streak snapped in an 89-83 home
setback to the Charlotte Bobcats on Wednesday. The C's only shot 37.7 percent
from the floor and 33.3 percent from long range in the loss.
"They were just quicker to the basketball all night, in every which way," said
Celtics head coach Brad Stevens. "I thought they did a great job right out of
the gate establishing a tone of the way the game was going to be played and it
was hard for us to manage that as we moved forward,"
The Bobcats took an eight-point lead into halftime.
Jeff Green led the Celtics with 19 points, followed by 16 from Jordan
Crawford. Gerald Wallace and Courtney Lee managed 10 points apiece and Kelly
Olynyk pulled down 11 rebounds.
Jared Sullinger missed the game with bone bruise on his right knee and is
listed as day-to-day.
The two squads split last season's matchups, but Portland has dropped nine
straight in Beantown.
11/15 10:24:23 ET