----- Damian Lillard scored 36 points and Enes Kanter recorded a double-double with 16 points and 13 rebounds as the Portland Trail Blazers made it back-to-back wins over the New Orleans Pelicans with a 101-93 victory Thursday night at Moda Center.
After Damian Lillard questioned his teammates' defensive effort in Tuesday night's win over the Pelicans, the squad responded with their best defensive effort on the season in their 101-93 win over New Orleans Thursday night at Moda Center.
"I just think that we came out sharper defensively," Lillard said. "We knew what we were capable of, and we put a solid defensive effort together and we were able to sustain it. We've had a couple opportunities to beat a team twice this season, and we haven't been able to do it. I think we all understood that and had that in mind, and we defended. Start to finish."
The Blazers held the Pelicans (17-24) to 39.8% shooting and just 10-of-37 from three-point range.
Blazers Head Coach Terry Stotts said it was his team's "best defensive performance of the season."
Lillard scored a game-high 36 points and Enes Kanter finished with 16 points and 13 rebounds to lead Portland (24-16).
Lillard scored 15 of Portland's first 20 points and made five of his six three-pointers in the first quarter helping the Blazers build a 31-23 lead.
The Trail Blazers controlled the game from start to finish. Zion Williamson got loose for a dunk to cut the deficit to 94-89 with 1:20 left in the game but New Orleans ran out of time.
Williamson led the Pelicans with 26 points and 10 rebounds and Brandon Ingram finished with 19.
Portland has won six of its last eight games and completed a three-game sweep of the Pelicans.
Up Next- The Trail Blazers will play the second of a back-to-back tomorrow night against the Dallas Mavericks at Moda Center. The game is scheduled to tip off at 7:00 PM.
Chad's Take- Best defensive on the season for the Trail Blazers.