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Portland Trail Blazers have myriad issues to fix during final stretch of season

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Portland Trail Blazers have myriad issues to fix during final stretch of season
Updated Apr 19, 2021;
Posted Apr 19, 2021
Portland Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts, right, talks to guard CJ McCollum during the first half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday, April 6, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez) APAP
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There are many ways to rationalize the Portland Trail Blazers’ poor showing during Sunday’s 109-101 loss at the Charlotte Hornets.
Coach Terry Stotts pointed out one in particular, noting that on Saturday the Phoenix Suns (40-16), owners of the second-best record in the NBA, lost 111-85 to San Antonio (27-28) when the Spurs rested three key players, DeMar DeRozan, Patty Mills and Jakob Poeltl.

Damian Lillard and Jusuf Nurkic ruled out Tuesday vs. Clippers


Hibbing, MN, USA / 93.9 WTBX
Apr 19, 2021 8:17 PM
Two of the Portland Trail Blazers' best players will be out for their marquee matchup against the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday.
Damian Lillard (right hamstring) and Jusuf Nurkic (right knee) won't play against Los Angeles, the team Portland would face in the playoffs if the season ended today.
It will be the third straight missed game for Lillard but the first for Nurkic since he missed a game April 10 against Detroit. He also missed the last meeting at the Clippers on April 6.
Head coach Terry Stotts isn't too concerned, however, with the long-term prognosis for his big man, Nurkic.

Portland Trail Blazers' Damian Lillard and Jusuf Nurkic out Tuesday versus the Los Angeles Clippers

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Portland Trail Blazers’ Damian Lillard and Jusuf Nurkic out Tuesday versus the Los Angeles Clippers
Updated 5:09 PM;
Today 5:00 PM
Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic (#27) finishes a layup past Heat guard Jimmy Butler (#22) as the Portland Trail Blazers face the Miami Heat at Moda Center on Sunday, April 11, 2021. Sean Meagher/The Oregonian
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The Portland Trail Blazers will be without both Damian Lillard and Jusuf Nurkic Tuesday night when they host the Los Angeles Clippers, the team announced Monday.
Lillard will miss his third consecutive game and fourth of the season. He sat out the team’s 107-106 win Friday at San Antonio and the team’s 109-101 loss Sunday at Charlotte with right “hamstring, tendinopathy,” according to Portland’s injury report.

Does Derrick Jones Jr. Actually Deserve A Permanent Rotation Spot?


Does Derrick Jones Jr. Actually Deserve A Permanent Rotation Spot?
A deep dive into how the Blazers' most prized offseason acquisition, just randomly benched, now fits into their full-strength roster.
Author:
Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images
A deep dive into how the Blazers' most prized offseason acquisition, just randomly benched, now fits into their full-strength roster.
Sunday's benching of Derrick Jones Jr., somehow, apparently had nothing to do with the Trail Blazers' most prized offseason acquisition himself. In fact, his game-long absence against the Charlotte Hornets wasn't even planned before tipoff. 
As Terry Stotts tells it, Jones got the shaft against the Charlotte Hornets simply because Portland wanted an extended look at a veteran journeyman it just signed to a second and final 10-day contract.

adidas' Impossible Is Nothing Campaign Is for Legends Only

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adidas' Impossible Is Nothing Campaign Is for Legends Only
adidas' "Impossible Is Nothing" Campaign Is for Legends Only
IVY PARK
adidas has launched its “Impossible Is Nothing” campaign, with 20 different archival montages showing an intimate and unseen side to some of its most legendary celebrity partners. The films feature never-before-seen footage of Ninja, Mohamed Salah, Cyrill Gutsch, FRONTPAGE cover star Damian Lillard as well as Highsnobiety's favorite footballer, Serge Gnabry, and Beyoncé herself.
In her minute-long video, we see Beyoncé “finding her voice,” as a child. Footage from her early life is spliced together with more recent footage from the Formation World Tour to show how Knowles has grown as a performer while staying true to herself and her vision. Watch it below.

Should the Trail Blazers Consider a Massive Overhaul this Offseason?

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Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images
The Portland Trail Blazers have hit a rough patch in recent weeks and their cellar-dwelling defense has not shown any signs of significant improvement as the roster inches closer to full strength. If Portland is unable to get back on track, especially during Damian Lillard’s prime years, is it time for the Blazers to consider a rebuild?
Earlier this week, Bleacher Report’s Zach Buckley suggested that the Blazers should consider a massive roster reformation in the near future. Buckley cited Portland’s abysmal defense and roster limitations in his analysis.
Sure, championship chasing is the obvious aim, but how is that remotely realistic? The Blazers, who have been knocked out of the first round in three of the past four years, are seeded an unspectacular sixth in the West and fortunate to even be that high. They have a negative scoring differential on the season and rank 15th in the category overall.

NBA power rankings: Portland Trail Blazers tumble after another losing week

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NBA power rankings: Portland Trail Blazers tumble after another losing week
Updated 9:58 AM;
Today 9:31 AM
Portland Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts reacts to an official's call during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Minnesota Timberwolves in Portland, Ore., Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021. (AP Photo/Steve Dykes) APAP
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The Portland Trail Blazers endured another losing week — and another tumble in the NBA power rankings.
The Blazers dropped to 3-6 in their last nine games after laboring through a tough 1-3 stretch that featured losses to the Miami Heat, Boston Celtics and Charlotte Hornets. Only a last-second come-from-behind win at San Antonio prevented a winless week.

Portland Trail Blazers vs. Charlotte Hornets Game Day Thread

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The Blazers hope to pick up another win in Buzz City.

Terry Rozier, Charlotte Hornets snap four-game skid, beat Portland Trail Blazers

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Rozier, Hornets snap 4-game skid, beat Blazers
Terry Rozier had 34 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds, and the Charlotte Hornets rode a strong first quarter to a 109-101 win over the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday night, snapping a four-game losing streak.
The Canadian Press
Terry Rozier
, The Canadian Press
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Terry Rozier told coach James Borrego before Sunday night's game that the Charlotte Hornets needed a win over Portland, and that he was available to play extra minutes, if needed.
Rozier broke loose 34 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds in 39 minutes, and the Hornets rode a strong first quarter to a 109-101 win over the Trail Blazers, snapping a four-game losing streak and moving to .500.

Hornets Ride First, Third Quarters to Home Win Over Trail Blazers

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The Charlotte Hornets took control on Sunday night with a huge third-quarter stretch and then held off a late Trail Blazers comeback attempt to seal a 109-101 victory at Spectrum Center, snapping a season-high-tying four-game skid.
Terry Rozier finished just two boards short of a triple-double, racking up a game-high 34 points on 7-of-13 shooting from three, eight rebounds, 10 assists and two steals in the win. Rozier has now double-doubled in consecutive games for the second time in his career (and second time this season) and is now the first player in franchise history with back-to-back outings of at least 25 points and 10 assists, per Basketball Reference.

Rozier, Hornets snap 4-game skid, beat Blazers 109-101 | Taiwan News


2021/04/19 09:44
Charlotte Hornets guard Terry Rozier drives past Portland Trail Blazers forward Norman Powell during the second half in an NBA basketball game on Sund...
Charlotte Hornets guard Terry Rozier drives past Portland Trail Blazers forward Norman Powell during the second half in an NBA basketball game on Sunday, April 18, 2021, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)
Charlotte Hornets guard Terry Rozier celebrates after scoring against the Portland Trail Blazers during the second half in an NBA basketball game on S...
Charlotte Hornets guard Terry Rozier celebrates after scoring against the Portland Trail Blazers during the second half in an NBA basketball game on Sunday, April 18, 2021, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

Carmelo Anthony Can't Lead Hapless Blazers Back Against Hornets

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Carmelo Anthony Can’t Lead Hapless Blazers Back Against Hornets
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Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
So, your NBA team, heretofore mired in mediocrity, just earned an exciting—you hope season-turning—road win against a conference rival, the San Antonio Spurs. How do you follow it up? If you said, “Jump on the next opponent, pound them early, and leave no doubt you intend to start a significant winning streak,” you may be a contender. If your answer was, “Play a lazy, gaffe-filled, barf-inducing swill-fest of a game, giving the win right back in the most demoralizing way possible,” you might be the Portland Trail Blazers.

6 Observations from the Blazers' Tough Night in Charlotte

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6 Observations from the Blazers’ Tough Night in Charlotte
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Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
Despite a late push in the fourth quarter, the Portland Trail Blazers fell to the Charlotte Hornets 109-101 on the road today. Carmelo Anthony led all Blazers in scoring with 24 points off the bench. CJ McCollum also scored 22, but did so on 8-for-22 shooting. Terry Rozier and PJ Washington led the way for Charlotte with 34 and 23 points respectively. Washington, who came off the bench, also added four blocks.
Dave Deckard had the somewhat-comical instant recap of the blowout loss. If you want a quarter-by-quarter description, you can find it here.

LaMarcus Aldridge Retires

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VAVEL USA
Photo via: NBA / Getty Images
LaMarcus Aldridge was forced into early retirement recently due to health concerns.
Aldridge had only recently signed for the Brooklyn Nets after getting bought out by the San Antonio Spurs. Despite only playing five games for the Nets he looked like he was going to be a key member of the roster and had a great chance of winning his first championship.
The 35-year-old revealed in his retirement letter that he had concerning health problems in his last game for the Nets, against the Los Angeles Lakers. 
"My last game, I played while dealing with an irregular heartbeat.

NBA Power Rankings - Why the season's final month starts with a new No. 1 team

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A few quality wins have propelled the Philadelphia 76ers back into our No. 1 spot.
Joel Embiid and the 76ers have won four straight, with the past three coming against playoff teams in the LA Clippers, Brooklyn Nets and Dallas Mavericks. The Utah Jazz, meanwhile, have dropped two of their past four games, including a 12-point overtime loss to a Los Angeles Lakers squad that continues to play without injured stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
The Eastern Conference is boasting plenty of streaking teams right now: The Boston Celtics, once in danger of a date in the play-in, have won six straight to tie the Atlanta Hawks for the No. 4 seed.

NBA Teams That Need a Full Rebuild This Offseason

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0 of 4
NBA fortunes can change overnight.
Sometimes the stars align—literally, in a two- or three-star conglomerate—and an also-ran transforms into a top-flight title contender. That's the fun kind of basketball metamorphosis.
Not to drag the room down, but that's not the type of restructuring we're here to discuss.
Rather, we're focused on the other end of the spectrum: the rebuild.
It's one of the most daunting—and, if improperly handled, haunting—challenges in all of sports. It's a public admission that what you're doing isn't working and the formula is broken beyond repair.
For the following four teams, the 2021 offseason is the time to make that admission and get the ball rolling on an organizational overhaul.

Damian Lillard to miss Portland Trail Blazers' game Sunday at Charlotte

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Damian Lillard to miss Portland Trail Blazers’ game Sunday at Charlotte
Updated Apr 17, 2021;
Posted Apr 17, 2021
Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard, right, looks to drive the ball on Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart, left, during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Tuesday, April 13, 2021. (AP Photo/Steve Dykes)AP
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Lillard missed Friday’s 107-106 victory at San Antonio after being ruled out with “right hamstring tendinopathy.”
Blazers coach Terry Stotts said Saturday that Lillard received treatment Saturday and that there’s no timetable for his return. After playing at the Hornets, the team returns home for a Tuesday night game against the Los Angeles Clippers followed by a Wednesday game against Denver.

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