Bucks 106, Trail Blazers 99

Preview | Box Score | Recap

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP)—A patient second half was what the Milwaukee Bucks needed against the Portland Trail Blazers, and ultimately what they lacked a couple of nights earlier in Seattle.

The Bucks trailed by as many as 10 points in the first half, then led by as many as 11 in the second and went on to beat the Blazers 106-99 Tuesday night.

The Bucks were coming off an 108-102 loss Sunday to the SuperSonics in a game they led by as many as 19 points.

The victory in Portland helped put that defeat in perspective.

“We were up 19 at Seattle and the first half of that game was a lot like tonight. Then in the second half, we got selfish,” Tim Thomas said. “When we got up in the second half here, we figured we might as well play together. So we made the game easier for ourselves.”

Thomas, playing in just his second game since missing nine with a sprained left ankle, led the Bucks with 23 points and six assists. Michael Redd added 22 points for the Bucks, who shot 58.2 percent.

“We had a big lead in Seattle and let it get away,” Redd said. “We were determined not to let that happen again.

The Blazers, who had lost just two home games, didn’t lose their third easily.

Dale Davis narrowed Milwaukee’s lead to 93-91 with just under six minutes to go, but the Blazers couldn’t get closer and the Bucks extended their lead to 101-93 on Desmond Mason’s jumper.

After Damon Stoudamire closed the Blazers to 103-99 with 1:19 left, Joe Smith answered with a 17-foot jumper.

Zach Randolph led the Blazers with 30 points and 18 rebounds, while Stoudamire had 21 points and 10 assists.

The Blazers were coming off a dramatic 112-108 victory Saturday over the rival Los Angeles Lakers behind 28 points from Rasheed Wallace after he made inflammatory comments to The Oregonian newspaper.

Wallace apologized before the Lakers game for using objectionable language in an interview earlier in the week in which he criticized the NBA’s “white establishment” for exploiting young black athletes to enrich itself.

Against the Bucks, Wallace was still greeted with a number of boos from the hometown fans. After scoring 14 points in the first half, he managed just one in the second.

“We just lost it,” Wallace said.

Jeff McInnis’ jumper and Randolph’s dunk off a behind-the-back pass from Wallace gave the Blazers a 25-19 lead.

The Blazers, who shot 65 percent in the first half and 51.2 percent for the game, went up 48-38 on Wallace’s jumper, but Thomas narrowed the gap to 54-52 before halftime.

“I told the guys in the locker room we had to be solid and answer any run they made at us,” Bucks coach Terry Porter said.

The Bucks listened.

Joe Smith’s layup tied it at 63, and Milwaukee took over with its own an 11-0 run that made it 74-63. Smith finished with 19 points and nine rebounds.

“We’ve got to get it figured out,” Randolph said. “We won a big gameagainst Los Angeles. We came back and it felt like we had no energy.”

Notes

The Bucks beat the Blazers in both their meetings last season. … Porter was drafted by the Blazers in 1985 and spent 10 seasons with the team. He was treated to a standing ovation by many of the Rose Garden fans before the game. “It was special. I feel the same way about them,” Porter said. … Itwas Randolph’s 12th double-double of the season.

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Top Performers

 Top Performers
 Milwaukee
T. Thomas T. Thomas
8-10,  23 Pts
4 Rebs, 6 Assists
 Portland
Z. Randolph Z. Randolph
13-22,  30 Pts
18 Rebs, 4 Assists

Team Stat Leaders

Points
Rebounds
Assists