Blazers Finish Strong To Top Wolves

----- Damian Lillard scores 13 of his game-high 35 points in the fourth quarter as the Trail Blazers defeat the Minnesota Timberwolves 108-99 Thursday night at Moda Center.

The Portland Trail Blazers extended their winning streak to a season-high five games on Thursday night with a 108-99 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves. The win moves Blazers into a tie with the San Antonio Spurs for fourth place in the Western Conference playoff standings and just a half game behind the Wolves for third.

The Blazers overcame a slow start on offense where they connected on just 32.7% of their shots in the first half including an abysmal 0-for-13 from three-point range. Damian Lillard missed all seven of his shots in the first quarter, but he refused to let the slow start prevent him from making an impact. Lillard finished with a game-high 35 points. 

Lillard talked about his struggles after the game saying, ''I was just missing. I was missing a lot of shots short, kept hitting the front of the rim. When it was leaving my hands it felt good. I just knew I had to shoot the ball a little bit higher,'' he said. ''I really wasn't worried about it, honestly.''

Karl-Anthony Towns led Minnesota (38-27) with 34 points and 17 rebounds but he scored just four points in final quarter. Terry Stotts adjusted his lineup to defend Towns by using Ed Davis for nearly 18 minutes in the second half. Davis responded by recording 10 points and 11 rebounds and playing some inspired defense in the paint.

Portland (36-26) put the game away with a 12-0 run in the fourth to take a 96-86 lead. With the win, the Blazers evened up the season series at 2-2 with Minnesota. The Blazers are now 11-4 in their last 15 games.

NEXT UP- The Blazers will host the Oklahoma City Thunder on Saturday night at Moda Center. The game is scheduled to tip off at 7:00 PM.

Chad's Take- Thank God for Ed Davis!

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