Portland, OR (SportsNetwork.com) - LaMarcus Aldridge posted 21 points and 12 rebounds to help the Portland Trail Blazers complete a season sweep of the New Orleans Pelicans with a 99-90 win on Saturday.
Damian Lillard scored 19 points and Chris Kaman added 16 and 11 rebounds off the bench for Portland, winners in six of seven following a five-game slide.
New Orleans could have pulled into a tie with Oklahoma City for the eighth playoff spot in the Western Conference with a win, but instead falls a game back. The Pelicans have the tiebreaker should the two teams finish with the same record.
Anthony Davis had 19 points, nine rebounds and four blocks in the setback, while Eric Gordon and Tyreke Evans scored 22 and 21 points, respectively.
"Every game we're in feels like a playoff game for us," said Davis. "Every time we play on the road the atmosphere is like the playoffs."
After Davis tied the game at 85-85 with his putback at 4:23, Nicolas Batum hit from deep to jumpstart a 10-0 Portland run. Lillard hit three free throws during the surge, which Aldridge capped with a dunk at 2:18.
Lillard's layup with just over a minute to play was the dagger.
"We just tightened things up," said Lillard. "We started to defend a lot better and play more physical. We executed really well."
The Blazers got 22 points from their bench in the second quarter and all nine players that took the floor scored at least two in the period, which they won 34-20 to take a 56-44 lead into halftime.
The spread reached 16 early in the third on Lillard's turnaround jumper, but Portland weathered the storm and then some, climbing all the way back to go in front on Gordon's deep 3-pointer at 2:59. Portland scored the final four points of the stanza though, and it led 75-72.
Portland won the rebounding margin, 51-35 ... The Blazers shot 21-for-23 from the foul line, while New Orleans finished just 5-of-10 ... Evans added nine assists and seven rebounds.