Rapid Reaction: 3 Quick Takeaways from the Trail Blazers loss to the Dallas Mavericks

Jamie Hudson
NBC Sports Northwest

Rapid Reaction: 3 Quick Takeaways from the Trail Blazers loss to the Dallas Mavericks originally appeared on nbcsportsnorthwest.com

DALLAS - Portland tipped-off its first of a back-to-back with a matinee game in Dallas on Sunday. It's clear that the Mavs are young team who are trying to figure out their new trade pieces, while the Blazers are looking to keep good positioning for a playoff run. 
Here are some quick thoughts from Dallas...
Final Box Score: Mavericks 102, Trail Blazers 101

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Different Hood rotation

In Rodney Hood's first game with Portland on Thursday against the Miami Heat, Zach Collins was the odd man out of the rotation and only saw the floor for a handful of minutes in the second half, but against the Mavs, Zach Collins checked in with Hood as the first two off the bench.

This goes to show that Coach Stotts is going to be changing up his rotation depending on matchups. With the Mavs big men being a little quicker and smaller, Coach Stotts decided to go with Collins instead of Meyers Leonard.

In the month of February, Collins is averaging just 7.5 minutes per game. He played 11 in the first half.

With the addition of Hood that means both Collins and Leonard will always need to be prepared to play big minutes one night and maybe be a DNP the next.

A tale of two halves on defense

The Blazers looked locked in on the defensive end from the tip-off. Yes, Dallas is trying to figure out their new trade pieces. 

The Mavs shot just 37% from the field for the first half and Portland held Luka Doncic to 3-of-9 shooting for 10 points in the half.

The Blazers went on a 19-1 run midway through the second quarter and what was most impressive of the run is that Portland held Dallas to just one made free throw.

Yet, Dallas made adjustments in the second half and Portland looked a step slow on ‘D'. The Mavs cutters were able to get to the hoop past their defenders.

In the second half it almost felt like the Blazers were the team who was playing three games in four days, not the Mavs.

Lillard Time comes early -- But it wasn't enough

When it looked as though the Mavs might take control of this game, Damian Lillard took over in the third.

It really was the Lillard show and just like that, he dropped 21 points in the third quarter alone to keep things interesting. 

However, the entire Trail Blazer team went 10 minutes and 10 seconds in the fourth quarter without scoring a bucket. Lillard had a decent attack to the paint in the final seconds, but the fourth quarter offensive issues continued, and the basket didn't drop. 

NEXT UP: Portland finishes its back-to-back when the Blazers visit Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday at 5:00pm on NBC Sports Northwest.

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