Blazers' Enes Kanter feeling 'blessed' after win against Thunder


Kanter has stepped right into the lineup and delivered quality minutes for the Trail Blazers, and on Sunday afternoon, he was key in their Game 1 win over the Thunder.

"Shoulder's good", George said after Monday's practice.

But he certainly wasn't himself.

The Oklahoma City Thunder lost Game 1 to the Portland Trail Blazers 104-99, but that's not the worst news to come out of Sunday's game.

It wasn't a physical issue, though, he said. I was like, 'Let's just stay solid, keep competing, keep playing hard, ' Lillard said. The fact of the matter is I haven't picked the ball up in four days.

That's the thing: George had great looks. "We want to take advantage of the home court". According to Second Spectrum data, the Thunder had better quality shots by both quantified shot quality (51.8 to 49.1) and quantified shot probability (51.6 to 51.5) than Portland.

It was a lackluster performance from the Thunder, who had a horrific shooting night as a team, hitting just 5-of-33 three-point attempts (15.2 percent).

The MVP candidate may be at less than 100 percent if he plays but the Trail Blazers have to prevent him from going off in this series. Russell Westbrook went 0-for-4, Jerami Grant 0-for-3.

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Game 2 is back at the Moda Centre on Wednesday (NZT). "He had a huge presence down the stretch and he played a huge part in us winning the game". "Tomorrow, we get shots up and get back in tune and try to get the same looks that we got tonight". Al-Farouq Aminu made free throws with 2:09 left to extend Portland's lead to 98-92.

"It's playoff time, so it's more than this, it's about being out there with my guys", George said.

Portland led by as many as 19 points in the first half, but the Thunder pulled within 80-77 early in the fourth quarter. "It's nothing new. Nothing different".

"I had a good day out there today". Westbrook is the engine, George is the accelerator. Oklahoma City was one of the Western Conference more talented teams for the majority of the season but fell in the standings after losing four consecutive games late in the year. George finished the game with 27 points, nine rebounds and four steals in 42 minutes. For me, it's just rhythm.

The Thunder have been to the playoffs every season since moving from Seattle in 2008, but they haven't gotten past the opening round for the past two seasons. "But my teammates made me very comfortable out there".

Asked about it afterward, Westbrook said: "We'll see". "I feel good about it".

George was one of the Thunder's best three-point shooters this season at 39% from long range. Plus, star guard CJ McCollum is dealing with a knee injury that's kept him out of action in 11 of the last 13 games.