The Trail Blazers started out the game looking like a team coming off a tough loss last night. On the other hand, the Brooklyn Nets looked well-rested after having the last two days in Portland to rest up and prepare for the Blazers.
Portland got out to a slow start and really there was just one Blazer who got things cooking on Friday night.
FINAL BOX SCORE: Nets 119, Blazers 115
Here are three quick takeaways from the Blazers loss:
1. Portland experiments with lineups
Blazers head coach Terry Stotts decided to start Mario Hezonja at power forward in place of Anthony Tolliver. Stotts then experimented with different lineups. Eleven players saw the floor on Friday night.
Part of the reason for an 11-man rotation was the Blazers lost Rodney Hood to back spasms after Hood played in just the first six minutes of action.
With Hood's injury and the offense struggles early on, Coach Stotts was clearly trying to figure out a lineup that would work against the Nets.
2. Nothing but Lillard
Moda Center fans were treated to a Damian Lillard takeover.
With CJ McCollum, Mario Hezonja, and the rest of the starting lineup struggling to finish at the rim or hit from deep, Lillard took it upon himself to get buckets. It was a night of Logo Lillard threes, acrobatic lay-ins, fadeaways, and everything in between for Lillard.
It wasn't until midway through the third quarter that someone other than Lillard had double-digit points and that's the way it stayed. Hassan Whiteside scored on a putback to give him 10 points. In the end, Lillard's 60-points weren't enough.
3. An NBA debut type of night
Nets rookie forward Nicolas Claxton saw his first NBA regular season minutes as did Blazers rookie forward Nassir Little.
Little showed off his length. He was very active on the defensive end, coming up with a big block on the perimeter and sacrificing his body to go to the floor while battling for a rebound.
The Blazer rookie proved that he is willing to do the dirty work and be that extra hustle type player. He got Blazers fans on their feet after driving to the hoop and throwing down a dunk that rocked the backboard.
Up Next: The Trail Blazers host the Atlanta Hawks on Sunday night with tip-off slated for 6:00pm on NBC Sports Northwest and the MyTeams App.
Be sure to check back throughout the night and tomorrow morning for analysis, articles, and videos from the players!
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Instant Analysis: Lillard doesn't get much help vs. Nets originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest