Cavaliers drop second straight game on road trip to Blazers 102-86
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — CJ McCollum had 27 points and the Trail Blazers shook of fatigue caused by weather-related travel delays to beat the defending NBA champion Cleveland Cavaliers 102-86 on Wednesday night.
Allen Crabbe added 24 points off the bench for the Blazers, who have won four straight regular-season games against the Cavs at the Moda Center. Portland led by as many as 24 points.
LeBron James had 20 points and 11 rebounds for Cleveland, which has lost just 10 games this season.
McCollum, who had 21 points in the second half, hit a 3-pointer that put Portland up 85-69 with just under nine minutes left in the game, then gestured for the crowd to stand as the Cavaliers called a timeout.
McCollum has had seven straight games with 25 points or more.
A snowstorm that dumped as much as 14 inches on parts of Portland caused travel problems for both teams late Tuesday.
The Cavaliers, who fell to the Utah Jazz 100-92 on Tuesday night, were delayed in getting to Portland but finally arrived about 3 a.m. Wednesday.
The Trail Blazers beat the Lakers in Los Angeles 108-87 on Tuesday night. The team’s flight was sent to Seattle, and players spent the night there. They flew into Portland by midday Wednesday and stayed in hotel to rest until game time.
“The show must go on,” McCollum said before the game.
The Cavaliers got a scare with 1:21 left in the first quarter when Kevin Love collided slightly with Al-Farouq Aminu and fell to the ground, clutching his left knee. Love walked off the court under his own power and returned a short time later.
Portland led 27-20 at the end of the first, led by Aminu with eight points. Crabbe’s running 3-pointer stretched the lead to 37-24.
Crabbe hit another 3-pointer and Maurice Harkless dunked to push the lead to 42-26 and the crowd was on its feet. But Love’s 3-pointer closed the gap to 45-39 with just under three minutes to go in the first half.
Portland led 49-41 at the break, with Crabbe’s 18 points leading all scorers.
The storm, which started Tuesday evening, had dumped the most snow recorded in the city since 2008 by midnight, according to the National Weather Service. When Wednesday’s total is included, it might be the city’s biggest snowfall of the 21st century.
Gov. Kate Brown and Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler both issued a state of emergency.
The Blazers encouraged fans to use their best judgment in whether to attend the game, and the crowd to see the defending NBA champions was surprisingly large.
Cavaliers: Coach Tyronn Lue was asked before the game how he felt James has been getting calls this season. “Next Question,” Lue said. … With his second assist of the game, James passed Tim Hardaway for 15th on NBA’s all-time assist list with 7,095.
Trail Blazers: When the Blazers played the Cavaliers back on Nov. 23, Kevin Love finished with 40 points after scoring 34 in the first quarter. Before Wednesday night’s game, Blazers coach Terry Stotts half-joked: “If we hold Kevin under 20 in the first quarter, that’ll be a good start.” Love had 8 points in the quarter. … It was Stotts’ 200th victory as Portland’s head coach.
KORVER’S ACCLIMATION: Kyle Korver made his debut against Utah, playing 17 minutes with two points. Against the Blazers he had two points in 25 minutes. He was 1-for-5 from the field.
“We’re going to try to do some things that he’s good at, ways to cut and get him open,” Lue said. “But we have to find the right combination of guys on the floor with him. It’s going to be some work for me to try to figure out but right now, just play the game.”
Cavaliers: The Cavs visit the Sacramento Kings on Friday night for the fifth game of their six-game road trip.
Trail Blazers: The Trail Blazers host the Orlando Magic on Friday night.