Portland owns a 107.2 defensive rating over its last eight games, a mark that ranks 16th in the league and represents a concerning drop for a defense that has ranked in the top 10 all season.
“That was a bad loss for us,” Portland coach Terry Stotts said. “We didn’t do the things defensively (to win), particularly in the first half. We didn’t play with the urgency defensively to have an impact. Obviously, we didn’t shoot the ball well (10 of 40 on 3-pointers) C. J. Cron Jersey , but I think that’s kind of a mindset as well. No excuses. We didn’t play well and we need to play better.”
The stop in Houston is the second on the Blazers’ four-game road swing with San Antonio and Denver, both scrapping to secure a postseason bid, up next. The Trail Blazers will close the regular season at home against Utah in a game that could mean a great deal to the Jazz. After streaking its way to third place in the conference standings, Portland can ill afford to surrender that momentum against the teams it could potentially face in the opening round of the playoffs.
“We’ve been a very, very good team for two or three months,” Stotts said. “But this game on the heels of losing at Memphis and our poor first half against Memphis at home (on April 1) David Dahl Jersey , I don’t know. We’ll watch the video, but I don’t know if it’s a mindset or not. But these last (few games), it’s not going to be easy the rest of the way. So, we’ve got to understand that.”
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