The Portland Trail Blazers came into Game 2 ready to take a commanding 2-0 lead, but the Denver Nuggets had other ideas. With their backs against the wall, the Nuggets came out with next level intensity on defense and were firing on all cylinders on offense. Their sheer force of will dominated the Blazers and the Nuggets took the game, 128-109, to even up the series.
Denver played an incredible first-half, scoring 73 points, and built a 12-point lead heading into halftime. This was despite a historic first-half from Damian Lillard who went off for 32 points including eight deep-balls on 11 attempts.
Denver came out ready with adjustments made after getting punched in the mouth by the Blazers in Game 1. Coach Michael Malone, not Mike, did an amazing job rallying his locker room and revising their game-plan after a disappointing playoff opener. How Terry Stotts responds in Game 3 could be the deciding factor for the series.
Coach Stotts has his work cut out for him
Despite the blowout, the Blazers technically still have momentum heading into Game 3. They went into Denver and stole one of the games in the Ball Arena, taking with them homecourt advantage.
Game 3 will be absolutely pivotal. If the Blazers win the next one, worst case scenario they head back into Denver for a best of three series. Best case, they take a commanding 3-1 lead and only have to win one of their next three matches.
The Nuggets showed their hand in Game 2, putting an importance on stopping Dame, or at least as much as possible, and attacking the Blazers inside. Let’s take a look at the film and see what Coach Malone and the Nuggets did and how Portland can counter.