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Portland Trail Blazers Vs. Minnesota Timberwolves Preview

For the month of January, both Minnesota and Portland are in the top-three teams in the league for points scored in the paint, but they also get hammered inside by the opposition. Expect a lot of offense near the hoop tonight. The Wolves also allow shots from the perimeter at a decent clip, but the Blazers have struggled to limit opponents' production from outside lately, too.

Minnesota Timberwolves at Portland Trail Blazers

He's an MVP candidate. Best power forward in the game," said Wesley Matthews, who added 24 points in Thursday's win. Love might have something to say about that after leap-frogging Houston's Dwight Howard in the final balloting to earn the first starting nod of his career. He ranks among the NBA leaders with 25.0 points and 13.0 rebounds per game while averaging a career-high 4.2 assists. "It means a lot. It doesn't go unnoticed," said Love, the franchise's first All-Star starter since Kevin Garnett in 2007.

Trail Blazers 115, Minnesota Timberwolves 104: Bench carries day in win (Beyond the box score)

It kind of discombobulated us a little bit when they scored. We missed some shots and that was the ballgame.'' Notes: The Blazers now embark on a tough four-game road trip that will take them to San Antonio, Dallas, Houston and Oklahoma City. ... It was the second time this season that Lillard has had 20 points in the first half. ... After the game several Cavaliers players returned to the Moda Center court for what appeared to be an impromptu practice.

Blazers Best Cavaliers, 108-96 for 3rd Straight

Love finished with 15 jual jaket jepang points and 13 rebounds. The Blazers reached 115 points despite shooting just 4 for 16 from three-point range. They did much of their damage inside, turning 13 offensive rebounds into 22 second-chance points, part of their 60 points in the paint.

Blazers ready for showdown with Warriors

18, 2013: Heat forward LeBron James bemoans a foul call during a victory against the Pacers. Steve Mitchell, USA TODAY Sports Dec. 17, 2013: Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant and guard Jeremy Lamb collide while attemptong to rebound the ball during the second half against the Denver Nuggets. Chris Humphreys, USA TODAY Sports Dec. 16, 2013: Trey Burke, bottom, can only watch as LeBron James does his thing above the rim with a monster one-handed jam during the Heat's win over the Jazz. Robert Mayer, USA TODAY Sports Dec. 15, 2013: Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge (12) tries to corral a rebound between Pistons forwards Josh Smith (6) and Greg Monroe (10) during Portland's overtime win. Tim Fuller Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports Fullscreen Dec. 14, 2013: Washington point guard John Wall (2) wasn't happy with a call here or the Wizards' play in a 113-97 home loss to the Clippers. Wall finished with 24 points and 12 assists, but his Los Angeles counterpart Chris Paul answered with 38 points and 12 dimes. Geoff Burke, USA TODAY Sports Dec.

Blazers overcome Pacers in battle of NBA's best

Portland leads the NBA with 109.5 points per game, but is allowing 103.5 ppg on defense. Golden State can score with the best of them and is posting an average of 104.0 ppg this season. It has played well on defense, too, allowing 99.9 ppg.

Blazers best Cavaliers, 108-96 for 3rd straight

Aldridge made his first 3-pointer of the season to give Portland back the lead, but Anderson Varejao's basket tied it at 96. Aldridge answered with pair of free throws, a 19-foot jumper and a layup that made it 102-96. The Blazers added consecutive 3-pointers from Wesley Matthews and Lillard for the final margin. Deng, acquired in a trade with the Chicago Bulls last week in exchange for Andrew Bynum and draft picks, appears to be fitting in nicely with the Cavaliers.

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