PORTLAND, Ore. — It's not good news, Blazers fans.
As encouraging as parts of the game were, the Blazers' 124-117 loss to the Houston Rockets on Saturday night at the Moda Center gave the team the ignominious distinction of losing four in a row at home, marking Portland's longest home losing streak since the 2012-13 season, when Portland lost eight in a row at home as part of a 13-game losing streak to end a 33-win season.
In the past four losses, the Blazers have continued their season-long struggle on offense, scoring 102.3 points per 100 possessions, which ranks 22nd in the NBA.
A big surprise has been the Blazers' defense, which was one of the NBA's best during the first month of the season. But over the past four games, Portland has allowed 115.1 points per 100 possessions, which ranks 28th in the league..
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Portland begins a five-game road trip Monday at Golden State (21-6). After the game against the Warriors, the Blazers play at Miami (12-13) on Wednesday; at Orlando (11-17) on Friday; at Charlotte (9-16) on Saturday and at Minnesota (16-11) next Monday.
Here's a look at where the Blazers stand in the latest batch of NBA power rankings.
RANKINGS RELEASED MONDAY
Last week's ranking: 11
Portland's neighbors: Washington Wizards at 13; Oklahoma City Thunder at 15
What they wrote: After suffering a fourth straight loss, the Trail Blazers embark on a five-game road trip in which they visit the Warriors, Heat, Magic, Hornets and Timberwolves before returning home to face the Spurs. Portland, however, may be able to withstand it, as its 6-4 record on the road is better than its 7-8 home mark.
NBA.com: Blazers rank No. 16 (down 3)
Last week's ranking: 13
Portland's neighbors: Utah Jazz at 15; Denver Nuggets at 17
What they wrote: The Blazers followed a 4-1 road trip (in which they allowed 102 points per 100 possessions) with an 0-4 homestand (in which they allowed 115), with Bradley Beal and James Harden torching their top-10 defense for a combined 99 points on Tuesday and Saturday. Opponent strength (each of the last four opponents have top-10 offenses) had something to do with it, but they have one more tough game in that regard on Monday. Even with Jusuf Nurkic and Maurice Harkless out against Houston, the starting lineup held up OK. But over the two games last week, the Blazers were outscored by 23 points with at least one reserve on the floor.
CBS Sports: Blazers rank No. 16 (down 7)
Last week's ranking: 9
Portland's neighbors: Philadelphia 76ers at 15; Denver Nuggets at 17
What they wrote: Portland's defense has been very good so far and deserves praise. Then it ran into a buzz saw of DeMarcus Cousins (38 points), Bradley Beal (51 points) and James Harden (48 points). Even the best defenses can't survive that.
Sports Illustrated: Blazers rank No. 13 (down 3)
Last week's ranking: 10
Portland's neighbors: Oklahoma City Thunder at 12; Miami Heat at 14
What they wrote: There was a lot to like about Portland’s epic battle with Houston, whether it was Damian Lillard’s offensive output, Al-Farouq Aminu’s great shooting night or C.J. McCollum’s effort in the fourth. The most encouraging thing, though? It took a blistering hot fourth from James Harden and Chris Paul to beat the Blazers on a night they so desperately missed Jusuf Nurkic out there.
USA Today: Blazers rank No. 11 (no change)
Last week's ranking: 11
Portland's neighbors: Denver Nuggets at 12, Washington Wizards at 10
What they wrote: The Blazers, who have lost four consecutive games, tip off a five-game road trip in Oakland on Monday night, where they'll take on a Warriors team that beat them by an average of 19.5 points in four games last season.
Sporting News: Blazers rank No. 12
Portland's neighbors: Oklahoma City Thunder at 13; Washington Wizards at 11
What they wrote: During their four-game losing streak, the Blazers’ tenuous defense has fallen apart, allowing 50.1 percent from the field and 115.1 points per 100 possessions, which ranks 29th in that span.
RANKINGS PUBLISHED WEDNESDAY
NBC Sports: Blazers tied for No. 16
Last week's ranking: 14
Portland's neighbors: Blazers are tied with Jazz at 16. Oklahoma City Thunder at 18, New York Knicks at 15.
What they wrote: Portland just went 0-4 on a homestand where they needed to rack up wins, because Monday started a tough five-game road trip and they lost the opener of that to the Warriors. The recent slump is due to the defense, which is fourth overall in the NBA for the season but lately has fallen apart, allowing 115.3 points per 100 possession. Portland will try to right the ship on the road with winnable games: Heat, Magic, Hornets, then Timberwolves.
Jared Cowley is a digital producer at KGW. Follow Jared on Twitter here.