Trail Blazers at Cavaliers
The Portland Trail Blazers are enduring quite the bumpy ride on their season-high seven-game, 11-day road trip. After dropping the first four contests, the Trail Blazers will look to rebound on Saturday when they visit the Cleveland Cavaliers. Portland permitted the first victory of the season for woe-begotten Washington on Wednesday before offering a listless performance in a 96-78 setback to Boston on Friday.
Alonzo Gee's last-second putback helped Cleveland snap a four-game losing skid with a 113-111 triumph over red-hot Atlanta on Friday. Anderson Varejao collected his seventh consecutive double-double as his 20 points and 18 rebounds helped the Cavaliers post just their second road win in 11 opportunities. Cleveland has only played five games at home this season.
TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, Comcast SportsNet Northwest (Portland), Fox Sports Ohio (Cleveland)
ABOUT THE TRAIL BLAZERS (6-10): Portland struggled out of the gate against the Celtics, shooting just 23.3 percent from the field in the first quarter. LaMarcus Aldridge continues to produce, collecting 23 points and eight rebounds on Friday. Aldridge has traditionally stepped up his game versus Cleveland, recording nearly two points more than his career average (19.7-17.9).
ABOUT THE CAVALIERS (4-12): Although the end result was positive, many players on the team took issue with Dion Waiters attempting the 3-pointer which set up Gee's putback. "Yeah, I guess I've got to be a little more specific and say, 'Try to get to the basket,' " coach Byron Scott said. "(Gee) bailed him out." Varejao is also bailing out the Cavaliers by recording double-digit rebounds in 11 of the 14 games he's played.
1. Aldridge scored 28 points as Portland powered its way to a 98-78 victory over Cleveland in the teams' lone meeting last season.
2. Cleveland's Daniel Gibson had nine points on 3-for-10 shooting in his return from a one-game absence with a sore right elbow.
3. Portland has won just two of its nine road games this season.