Aldridge was coming a career-high 37 points in a Tuesday victory against Minnesota. But the skillful forward did little in the first three quarters when he was limited to eight points.
Yet Aldridge delivered when the Blazers needed it most. He scored 10 points in the fourth quarter and five more in the overtime when Portland outscored the struggling Kings 9-5 to secure a rare road victory.
“I had to stick with it. I was not in a good rhythm—I was kind of tired,” said Aldridge, who made 10 of 24 shots and added nine rebounds. “I went out and tried to make plays in the fourth.”
Last week the Blazers found out Roy, a three-time all-star, would be out indefinitely. He had surgery Monday on both of knees.
This week the bad news was about Camby. The Blazers’ starting center injured his left knee Tuesday against the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Camby, who is fourth in the NBA in rebounding (11.3) and 10th in blocked shots (1.87) will have surgery Thursday and there is no timetable for his return.
“Collectively, we’ve got to do those things that our guys missing were doing for us,” Blazers coach Nate McMillan said. “Tonight it was mentally challenging in an overtime game on the road. In overtime we made plays, something we talked about doing all season long. You need to make plays down the stretch.”
The ending was all too familiar to the Kings who have played poorly in the fourth quarter for much of the season.
Against the Blazers, Sacramento scored only nine points in the game’s final 11 minutes.
“That’s a very good team that we took to the brink again and came up short,” Kings coach Paul Westphal said. “There’s nothing easy about it. I think counting the road trip and this game we’ve had a lead in the fourth quarter six out of seven times and won one of those games.”
The lead went back and forth in the first three minutes of overtime. Miller’s jumper gave the Blazers the lead for good at 92-90 lead with 1:49 remaining.
Looking to tie the game, Evans misfired on a driving attempt and several follow shots didn’t fall. Batum eventually secured the rebound and after being fouled, made a pair to put Portland ahead 94-90 with 7.6 seconds left.
“In overtime we didn’t panic. We stayed calm and executed our game plan,” Batum said. “We did a good job at the end. They have some good players like Tyreke, (DaMarcus) Cousins and Beno.
“I don’t know how they only have nine wins.”
Aldridge missed a mid-range jumper with 2 seconds left, sending the game into overtime.
The Kings did a nice job in first three quarters defensively against Aldridge, who missed nine of 12 shots and had eight points. Jason Thompson(notes) and Dalembert were the primary defenders against Aldrige.
“He’s (Aldridge) a guy that’s been carrying them in a big way and we did a good job of making him earn his points tonight and shoot a lower percentage of shots,” Westphal said. “Give the other guys credit. Andre Miller, Batum and Fernandez made big shots for them when Aldridge wasn’t able to do it.”
In a sluggish third quarter characterized by missed perimeter shots and frequent turnovers by both teams, the Kings tied the game at 65 when Landry dunked with 2 seconds left.
NOTES: San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Sergio Romo was in a courtside seat. Kings starting forward Francisco Garcia(notes) missed his second straight game with a strained left calf. The two teams play again Monday in Portland. Evans had 11 points in the first half to help the Kings to a 48-46 lead.