----- CJ McCollum scores 24 points as the Portland Trail Blazers open their road trip with a 100-92 win over the Memphis Grizzles.
The Portland Trail Blazers defeated the Memphis Grizzlies, 100-92, Monday night at FedEx Forum, on a night when the offense struggled with the Blazers shooting just 38.4% from the field. Damian Lillard turned his ankle late in the first half after stepping on Chandler Parson's foot while driving to the basket. Lillard was able to return in the second half finishing with 21 points. After the game, Lillard said he expects to play in Wednesday's game at Philadelphia.
The Blazers got off to a slow start with the Grizzlies taking an early 17-8 lead. The Blazers responded with a 25-8 run that spanned from the first quarter into the second with Portland taking a 55-46 halftime lead. The Grizzlies made a push in the third quarter with a 12-0 run to pull even at 67-67. The key moment in the fourth quarter came after Marc Gasol tied the game at 80-80 with a made free throw. The Blazers responded with a 10-4 run to take control of the game.
Portland (10-7) got 24 points from CJ McCollum and 11 points and 18 rebounds from Noah Vonleh. Shabazz Napier scored 16 points off the bench and Meyers Leonard followed up his strong effort on Saturday night with eight points on 4-for-4 shooting. The Blazers dominated the glass with a 60-35 edge in rebounding.
Memphis (7-9) got 21 points from Mario Chalmers and 19 points and 12 rebounds from Gasol on just 7-for-20 shooting. Memphis has now lost five-straight games.
Next up- The Blazers travel to Philadelphia to meet the Sixers. Game is scheduled to tip off at 4:00 PM.
Chad's Take- On a night when Dame tweaked his ankle, Jusuf Nurkic shot just 3-for-13 from the field, and the Grizzlies went on a 12-0 run in the third quarter to tie the game, Portland still found a way to win. This was a tough win for the Blazers. Portland had a 60-35 edge in rebounding with Noah Vonleh pulling down 18. The Blazers are a young team that is learning how to win games like this. Portland didn't shoot the ball well tonight, but they found a way to win by rebounding and playing tough defense. That is what good teams do.