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Miller has 18 points, 10 assists and 7 rebounds as Portland beats Toronto 101-87 – Metro US

Miller has 18 points, 10 assists and 7 rebounds as Portland beats Toronto 101-87

A burst of energy off the bench helped the Portland Trail Blazers run away from the Toronto Raptors.

Andre Miller had 18 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds, Brandon Roy scored 20 points, and the Trail Blazers beat the Raptors 101-87 on Wednesday night.

“We tried different guys on (Miller and Roy), we tried different looks and we couldn’t stop them,” Toronto coach Jay Triano said. “They were better than us tonight.”

Rudy Fernandez scored 17 points, Jerryd Bayless had 11 and Juwan Howard 10 for the Trail Blazers, who won for the second time in two days on a five-game trip that will also take them to Chicago, Minnesota and Memphis.

“It was an all around effort,” Roy said. “We had guys step up. LaMarcus played a lot of minutes last night and it was key tonight that Jerryd came in and gave us some energy. If (Bayless and Fernandez) play like that, they’ll make my job a lot easier.”

Portland had lost 10 of 17 before heading out on this trip, and coach Nate McMillan likes the way it has started.

“We showed that we’re hungry and that we’re not going to let this season slip away,” McMillan said. “I like the fight that we’ve had in these last two games.”

Hedo Turkoglu scored 24 points, Jarrett Jack had 18 and Andrea Bargnani added 15 as the Raptors failed to top 100 points, ending a 20-game streak that began Jan. 6 at Orlando. Toronto went 14-6 in that span.

“It was important to run them off the three-point line and take away their easy baskets,” Roy said. “We just wanted to make them score over top of a hand each possession and we did a good job of that.”

Elsewhere in the NHL it was: Atlanta 98 Minnesota 92; Memphis 99 Wizards 94; Orlando 110 Houston 92; Milwaukee 115 New Orleans 95; San Antonio 95 Oklahoma City 87; Chicago 120 Indiana 110; Phoenix 106 Philadelphia 95; Utah 102 Charlotte 93; Dallas 101 L.A. Lakers 96; and L.A. Clippers 97 Detroit 91.

At Toronto, Amir Johnson had 10 points and eight rebounds for the Raptors.

Portland came in last in the NBA in fast break points, averaging less than nine per game, but scored 20 against Toronto.

“They had too many easy points,” Turkoglu said.

For Miller, it was his second straight game without a turnover.

“Every team worries about turnovers but this team stresses it more than some others,” Miller said. “I’ve kind of put an emphasis on that in my game, making simple passes and not a lot of high-risk passes like I normally do.”

Both teams were missing starters. Toronto’s Chris Bosh sat out for the third straight game with a sprained left ankle and was replaced by Rasho Nesterovic. Howard started for Portland in place of Marcus Camby, who left Tuesday’s win at New Jersey with a sprained right ankle.

Turkoglu had seven quick points but picked up his third foul just over three minutes in and headed to the bench. The offence stalled without him, and six Toronto turnovers and eight points from Roy helped Portland take a 32-24 lead after one.

Toronto called timeout after Roy’s corner three made it 51-34 with 3:33 left in the second, but closed the half on a 13-4 run, capped by a three from Turkoglu, to make it 53-47 at the break.

“We didn’t do a good job of taking care of the ball early and it helped them establish the lead they had at halftime,” Jack said. “It’s tough to recover when you give the other team extra possession.”

Miller scored six points in the third and Bayless and Fernandez each added five as Portland overcame nine points from Jack to pull away again, taking a 78-68 lead into the fourth.

With the game going at the same time as Canada’s Olympic hockey showdown against Russia, the announced crowd was 16,161 at Air Canada Centre, but there were empty seats in every section. Many watched the hockey live in stadium bars, restaurants and suites, and there were noticeable cheers each time Canada scored and some boos after Russian goals. The screens on the main scoreboard switched to hockey after the basketball game finished.

“I didn’t hear (the cheers) but I knew that Canada was playing Russia and I saw that it was at our game time so I was happy about that,” McMillan said, smiling. “I looked at the stands when we first came in and said they may have a lot of no-shows. I thought they scheduled it for the right time.”

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