After a bittersweet night Tuesday at the Rose Garden, the Portland Trail Blazers are looking to refocus after a 108-87 loss to Golden State. Despite the loss, the Blazers are headed back to the playoffs for the third straight season by virtue of the Houston Rockets loss to Sacramento.
“You have those games where you can’t throw a rock in a lake,” said Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge at the team’s practice Wednesday morning. “We missed layups, wide open threes. It’s one of those games we came out flat. We just have to bounce back for the game tomorrow.”
“It was a bad night,” added Head Coach Nate McMillan. “I thought mentally we weren’t there. We weren’t sharp. “
The loss could come back to haunt them in playoff seeding. Portland was watching the results of the New Orleans and Houston game Wednesday night. A New Orleans victory would drop Portland to seventh place in the Western Conference and pose a likely first round matchup with the L.A. Lakers.
Even with the setback, McMillan is optimistic and pleased with how the team has played recently. The Blazers will get a chance to see how they stack up with the Lakers Friday night.
“Felt like we’ve been doing some good things here lately,” said McMillan. “Last night was one of those nights you just want to move on to the next game.”
The next game will be in Utah against the Jazz, who have slipped out of playoff contention. The Blazers lead the season series with the Jazz 2-1. The last meeting was in December 30 in Portland. The Blazers won that game 100-87.
Marcus Camby will not be available to play in the next two games. The center is resting a sprained neck he suffered while taking a fall in Tuesday night’s game against the Warriors.