It is often said that the best way to get over a bad loss is to play another game as soon as possible. And if that game is against the team that just handed you that loss, all the better.
After losing 86-82 to the Kings (4-11) in Sacramento Friday night in arguably their worst loss of the season, the Trail Blazers (8-7) return to Portland to host the Kings in the second night of a home-and-home back-to-back Saturday night at the Moda Center. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.
While neither team played all that well Friday night, the Kings were able to come away with the victory in front of their home crowd at the Golden 1 Center thanks to holding the Trail Blazers to 37 percent shooting from the field and 28 percent shooting from three.
“Sacramento played extremely hard,” said Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts after the loss. “They played with desperation defensively, they were aggressive, we didn’t handle that very well. You’ve got to give them credit but it’s hard to win a game shooting 37 percent. There are a lot of areas we could have played better, offensively and defensively.”
Damian Lillard (29 points) and CJ McCollum (19 points) were the only Trail Blazers who managed to hit double figures in scoring, while four Kings, led by 22 points off the bench from Willie Cauley-Stein, put up at least 10 points in the winning effort.
“They took it to us,” said McCollum. “They outplayed us, beat us to loose balls, forced turnovers, got into us defensively. What we score, 80 points tonight? You’re not going to win many games scoring 80 points.”
Saturday’s rematch finishes a stretch for the Trail Blazers in which they’ve played 11 of 13 games at the Moda Center. Portland has gone 6-4 in those games and will go almost two weeks before playing and home game after Saturday night’s contest.
Saturday’s game is also the second annual Pride Night at the Moda Center, which will feature the Portland Lesbian Choir singing the National Anthem and other events to celebrate and raise money for the local LGBTQAI+ community.
Kevin Calabro, Lamar Hurd and Brooke Olzendam will have the call on NBC Sports Northwest starting at 7 pm.m, with Brian Wheeler and Michael Holton handling the radio call on Rip City Radio 620 AM and on all of the stations of the Trail Blazers Radio Network.