Blazers entertain Nuggets at Rose Garden
Northwest Division rivals meet in Rip City on Saturday when rounded Denver Nuggets at the Rose Garden.
The Blazers have been two different teams this season depending on where the games are being played. Portland fell to a miserable 3-9 on the road after Thursday's 95-92 setback at Sacramento.
Raymond Felton and Jamal Crawford both missed three-pointers for the Blazers in the final 10 seconds of that one to seal the win for the lowly Kings.
LaMarcus Aldridge finished with 28 points and 14 rebounds for Portland, which has lost two of three overall and four straight as the visitor. Felton finished with 15 points and 10 assists.
"We've had every opportunity the last (couple) road games and we're finding ways to lose it," Crawford said.
Portland is a sizzling 10-1 as the host. On the injury front for the Blazers, forward Nicolas Batum missed his second straight game against the Kings with a bone bruise on his left knee. He is listed as questionable for tonight
The Nuggets look to bounce back from last night's 93-89 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers at the Pepsi Center when they invade the Rose City.
Al Harrington ended with 24 points and eight rebounds for the Nuggets, who have lost three of four since a six-game winning streak. Andre Miller and Ty Lawson chipped in 16 and 14 points, respectively, in a losing cause.
Harrington's three-pointer bounced off the rim in the final second.
"For an end of the game situation against a good defensive team he got a fair release," Denver head coach George Karl said. "I wouldn't call it a great shot. I'd like better, I would have liked to have gone quicker. I would have liked to have gone to the rim in four or five seconds. [Derek] Fisher has been there a lot of times. He made a good defensive play and Ty didn't give it a second attempt. The play before that broke open very well and the last play didn't open very well."
To make matters worse, Denver lost starting center Timofey Mozgov to a sprained left ankle. With about 10 minutes to go in the third quarter, Mozgov came down awkwardly on his left ankle after making a layup. He was not able to put pressure on his left foot, but X-rays came back negative. Mozgov is expected to sit out tonight's game.
Danilo Gallinari had six points in less than 29 minutes against the Lakers and is questionable tonight with blurred vision in his left eye. He leads Denver with 17.0 points per game.
After visiting the Blazers Saturday, the Nuggets, who are 8-4 as the guest, will return to the Rocky Mountains for a three-game homestand versus the Rockets, Mavericks and Warriors.
Portland has won two straight over Denver overall and four consecutive in Rip City, including a 111-102 win on Dec. 29 this season.