It wasn’t pretty. It wasn’t graceful. But, It was a win. The Blazers finished the game on a 13-5 run behind Jerami Grant to beat the Sacramento Kings 115 – 108 and start the season 1-0.
On a night where Blazers star Damian Lillard struggled to find his shot admist a suffocating Kings defense, mostly at the hands of Davion Mitchell, he must have been glad to get a little help from his friends.
Lillard shot 5/18 from the field and just 1-8 from three, finishing with 20 points and a league tying high 8 assists. Anfernee Simons also struggled shooting on the night hitting just 3-10 from distance, but managed to put up 22 portland.
Jerami Grant led the way with 23 points, including the go ahead bucket in the fourth to help hand Portland the victory. Josh Hart put up 19 points, 7 rebounds, and 9 assists.
Rookie Shaedon Sharpe had a positive debut, hitting 3-3 from deep and finishing with 12 points in 16 minutes. Justice Winslow helpwed anchor the Blazers defense off the bench with Trendon Watford and Gary Payton II out.
De’Aaron Fox was on fire for the Kings, leading the way with 33 points, 7 rebounds, and 7 assists. Kevin Huerter was lightning, hitting 6-9 from three for 23 points.
But, the sharp shooting of the Kings wasn’t enough to overcome the Blazers 56-38 points in the paint advantage in the paint. The Blazers also outrebounded the Kings 44-41.
The Blazers will host the Suns on Friday for their season home opener.