Portland wasted little time jumping on the Magic, running out to a 20-point lead in the first quarter. Orlando, losers of four of their last five, just couldn't find a rhythm... until the second quarter started.
The Magic started the second on a 14-2 run, cutting the Blazers lead to just six. But the Blazers answered quickly and though Orlando tried to stay within reach, the game was never in doubt.
But it wasn't all good news. Carmelo Anthony suffered a left knee contusion in the game. He subbed out with 7:59 left in the second quarter and would not return. He ended the night with five points, six rebound, and three blocks in nine minutes.
Back to the good news. Damian Lillard put on a show. He ended the night with 36 points, scoring 16 in the third quarter alone.
There were a few bumps along the way, but in the end, the Blazers took care of business winning their third game in a row.
Final Score: Blazers 118 - Magic 103.
On how Coach Stotts will approach the lineup if Carmelo Anthony is out...
Well, I don't know if he'll be able to play tomorrow or not, hopefully he plays, but if he can't play, you know our roster. So, guys will fill in.
Did Damian Lillard have a sense for how serious Melo's knee injury was?
I think if it was serious, I would be able to see the concern on his face. He didn't seem too concerned. I think the way the game was going tonight, it really didn't make sense for him to try and play through it and risk making it worse than it was. We had a pretty good lead. He's been around a long time so he could see how the game felt - it felt like we were in pretty good control. So I thought he made the right decision.
Lillard on if he is seeing more improvement offensively or defensively lately...
I think both. Even when we weren't playing well, we'd find a way to score points. We've always found a way. But I think our offense has improved even from that because of the way we're defending. We're not playing against a set defense as often if we're able to get the ball and kind of push it and get out and they're off balance. We're playing against something different than what we started off the season playing against every night, just a set defense because we was getting scored on every time.
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