Sports

Three keys to the Blazers first-round playoff series against the Pelicans

Three keys to the Blazers first-round playoff series against the Pelicans

The victor of this series will be the team that best alleviates that pressure-whether through role players stepping up as contributors or stars, through some creative quirk, circumventing the premise entirely. "We were trying to figure out how we wanted to play, and then we figured it out and were able to push through it".

"I think that is all psycho-babble", he said. He also shot 53.6 percent from the field and 38.3 percent from three-point range.

But over a four-game season series - and especially over a best-of-seven playoff series - some clear signs do begin to emerge.

The main concern for the Blazers is how to limit Anthony Davis, who has been on a tear of late.

FiveThirtyEight doesn't have much to say about the Blazers, but it's worth noting their CARM-ELO model gives Portland a 3 percent chance to win the National Basketball Association championship, up from a 1% chance in the preseason. Between Houston and Golden State, that would be the matchup they would want with the Warriors. Mirotic hasn't scored fewer than 21 in any of New Orleans past five games.

More news: First Horizon National Corporation (FHN) Recent Ownership Changes

Both sides opened the game showcasing attractive offense and that continued until 4:32 remained in the second quarter, when Pau Gasol sank a short turnaround to cut New Orleans' lead to 42-39. New Orleans' 48 victories is the third most in franchise history, which officially dates back to the NBA's return to the city in 2002-03.

Lillard, who goes into the game averaging 26.9 points, had 41 points in the final meeting of the season with the Pelicans, a 107-103 Blazers win in New Orleans. They are identical to what the players wear before the game when they're doing warm-ups.

Spurs: Prepare for a first-round playoff matchup against defending champion Golden State.

BC-BKN-Pelicans-Trail Blazers, 644Lillard likes matchup but knows Pelicans are dangerousAP Photo ORSD111, LAST103Eds: With AP Photos.

Pelicans: Start their postseason in Portland.


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