Pelicans catch Portland on a very off night
The revamped New Orleans Pelicans, with power forward DeMarcus Cousins joining center Anthony Davis on the front line, were way too much for the Blazers on Tuesday night in New Orleans.
Cousins had 22 points and nine rebounds, and Davis had 15 points and 15 rebounds as New Orleans won 100-77.
Portland shot 30.3 percent from the field, jumping from 29.3 percent when its final, uncontested shot fell at the buzzer.
Portland fell to 1-1 on a five-game stretch of road games.
The Blazers also slipped to 29-37 for the season and 2 1/2 games behind eighth-place Denver in the NBA Western Conference battle for the final playoff spot. Portland is one game ahead of Minnesota and Dallas, both 28-38.
The Pelicans are next, and 12th, in the West at 27-40.
The Blazers also slipped to 12-23 away from Moda Center.
The Pelicans had 21-point leads in the third quarter, and then hit a 3 at the buzzers for a 77-54 lead going into the final 12 minutes.
Damian Lillard was about all the Blazers had going for them. He finished with 29 points on 8-for18 field-goal shooting, including 4 of 7 from beyond the arc.
Center Jusuf Nurkic managed two points (1 for 8) with eight rebounds in 22 minutes. CJ McCollum had eight points.
The next stop for Portland is 5 p.m. PT Wednesday at San Antonio, which could be a first-round opponent for whichever team claims the eighth spot in the West.