Portland Trail Blazers: 3 Takeaways from Game 2 flop vs Denver Nuggets

Damian Lillard Portland Trail Blazers Denver Nuggets (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Damian Lillard Portland Trail Blazers Denver Nuggets (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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Portland Trail Blazers Terry Stotts
Portland Trail Blazers, Terry Stotts (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /

3. The Blazers have to take care of the ball

Obviously, not turning the ball over is a pretty solid game-plan. Against a team that moves the ball and has streaky shooters like Denver, it becomes even more important. The Blazers finished the game with an uncharacteristic 21 turnovers leading to 21 direct points for the Nuggets. It’s almost a given that Denver is going to find a good shot in transition and the more turnovers they force, the more warm-up 3-pointers their snipers get.

After falling down early, it seemed like the Blazers got the jitters. On multiple occasions, players were dribbling out of bounds, fumbling passes, and making overall shaky decisions with the rock. The Nuggets came out in a basically must-win game and showed tremendous intensity on defense while the Blazers responded weakly.

Coach Stotts has his work cut out for him convincing the locker room that they’re still in a great position. Even with the loss, the Blazers split their first two games in Denver and have taken homecourt advantage away from the Nuggets. Stotts will have to ensure that the team comes out confident in Game 3 and takes care of the ball.

While Denver has plenty of long, active defenders, the Blazers valued their possessions immaculately in the regular season. Portland ranked number one in the league with just 11.1 turnovers per game. When they registered less than 11 giveaways this season, they had a scorching .72 win percentage.

With Dame and CJ on the team, the Blazers are almost always guaranteed a good look. Coach Stotts and the rest of the team just have to make sure that they finish their possessions with a shot.

Next. Damian Lillard has all-time performance despite loss in Game 2. dark