Hornets, Blazers clash in the Rose City

(SportsNetwork.com) – One game after a terrible loss, the Charlotte Hornets
try to get back into the win column Tuesday night against the Portland Trail
Blazers at the Moda Center.

The Hornets fell to the Los Angeles Lakers, 107-92, Sunday at Staples Center.
That started a four-game western trip for the Hornets, who had won two
straight before heading to other coast.

The Lakers shot 51.2 percent from the floor and scored 16 points off 14
Charlotte turnovers. The Hornets only managed to shoot 44.3 percent and under
22 percent from long range.

“We had good shots and some nights the ball doesn’t go in the basket,” said
Hornets coach Steve Clifford. “And when the ball didn’t go in the basket, we
stopped defending and stopped rebounding.”

Al Jefferson paced the Hornets with 23 points, while Kemba Walker and Marvin
Williams scored 17 and 11, respectively. Lance Stephenson pulled down a game-
high 10 rebounds.

The Hornets are now 0-3 on the road and visit the Phoenix Suns and Golden
State Warriors on the rest of the odyssey.

The Blazers have won three of the last four, including a 116-100 home victory
over the Denver Nuggets on Sunday.

The win came with a price as Nicolas Batum injured his right knee late in the
contest and will miss Tuesday’s contest. An MRI after the game revealed no
structural damage.

Dorell Wright is expected to start in Batum’s absence despite being a DNP-CD
against Denver.

LaMarcus Aldridge had 28 points and nine rebounds in the victory. Wesley
Matthews added 21 points and six boards for the Blazers, who improved to 4-3
on the young season. Robin Lopez and Chris Kaman each tallied 12 points.

“It was a good win,” Matthews said. “I think we did a good job, especially in
the second half.”

Damian Lillard and Batum had 11 and 10 points, respectively, for the Blazers,
who went 16-of-31 from beyond the arc.

The Hornets are 1-4 in their last five against the Blazers and the record is
worse in Portland. Charlotte has dropped six straight in Rose City and seven
of its last eight.