----- Anthony Davis scored 35 points and pulled down 14 rebounds as the New Orleans Pelicans defeated the Portland Trail Blazers 97-95 in Game 1 of their Western Conference first-round playoff series.
It took the Trail Blazers 82-games to earn home-court advantage in the first-round of the NBA Playoffs, and it took just one-game for the New Orleans Pelicans to steal it back.
Anthony Davis scored 35 points and pulled down 14 rebounds as the New Orleans Pelicans defeated the Portland Trail Blazers 97-95 in Game 1 of their Western Conference first-round playoff series. Jrue Holiday scored 21 points and Rajon Rondo dished out 17 assists both outplaying both Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum on both ends of the floor.
New Orleans Coach Alvin Gentry complimented Rondo after the game saying, ''I think there is a sense of confidence that he has, especially this time of the year,'' Gentry said. ''He's a really bright player. One of the smartest guys I've ever been around. I've obviously had the opportunity to coach Steph (Curry), Chris Paul, Steve Nash, Grant Hill. When you start talking about the extremely smart players, he's one of those guys. I also think he has a way of giving confidence to the other guys. He makes them believe in themselves.''
The Blazers trailed by as much as 19 points in the second half before McCollum cut the Pelicans lead to 93-92 just inside a minute left, but a turnover combined with a missed shot by Lillard and a Holiday block on a Connaughton layup attempt allowed Davis to seal the game at the foul line.
The Blazers connected on just 37.8% of their shots form the field including just 12-for-39 from three-point range. Portland's two stars finished with just three combined free-throw attempts. McCollum says it's on them to force the issue.
''Maybe we need to be more aggressive getting downhill,'' McCollum said. ''You've got to figure out how the referees are reffing the game and go from there.''
NEXT UP- The Trail Blazers will host the New Orleans Pelicans in Game Two of their first round series on Tuesday night. The game is scheduled to tip off at 7:30 PM.
Chad's Take- Are you kidding me?