Portland wins Game 1 against the Thunder 104-99

Silvia Morton
April 16, 2019

It took the Rockets a few months to get on track for the season, but the second-half surge up the Western Conference standings netted the respect of a team that pushed Golden State to the brink of elimination before the Warriors rallied and later secured their second championship in succession and third in the span of four years.

"Four days ago I couldn't even lift my shoulder", he said.

"Tomorrow we'll get shots up and get back in tune", George continued. As a team, the Trailblazers shot 41 percent from the field and 11 of 25 from the 3-point line as they stormed out to an early double-digit lead before edging out the Thunder late. Center Steven Adams was also completely outplayed in the paint by former teammate Enes Kanter. The Thunder defense was again good, holding the Blazers to just 37 percent shooting and 0-of-1 from three, but Kanter contributed six points and six rebounds in the third to keep pace.

Antetokounmpo had 24 points and 17 rebounds in just 24 minutes, as the Milwaukee began their hunt for a playoff championship ring with a 121-86 blowout of the Pistons in game one. Leave it to the Knicks to underutilize a talented player that is capable of thriving in the right situation.

Kanter provided quality minutes off the bench and raised his game to another level filling in for Jusuf Nurkic in the starting lineup.

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Several days later, the Trail Blazers signed Kanter to help with their playoff push.

It truly has been a significant role reversal from his time with the Knicks. It definitely feels awesome. "He had a huge presence down the stretch and played a huge part in us winning this game", said Lillard. It was a standout performance when most expected him to wilt under the pressure of going head-to-head with Westbrook. George finished with 26 points and 10 rebounds, but he shot just 8-of-24 from the field and 4-of-15 from beyond the arc.

The under is 4-1 in the last five head-to-head meetings between the Trail Blazers and Thunder in Portland.

It was the first postseason meeting between the teams since the Thunder moved from Seattle to Oklahoma City.

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