Lucas: 'I knew they were gonna beat us'

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) --Ruben Patterson knows he's not going to
get chances like this too often.

Subbing for injured starter Bonzi Wells, Patterson took
advantage of his playing time and scored 20 points as the Portland
Trail Blazers defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 118-94 Monday night.

"I know my role,'' Patterson said. "I knew what I had to do,
and that's what I did.''

Wells, who is averaging 16.2 points and is the team's
second-leading scorer behind Rasheed Wallace, did not suit up
because of a sore left foot. Patterson was making his seventh

The Trail Blazers, coming off a tough 82-81 loss to the Denver
Nuggets on Friday night, have now won 12 of their last 15.

The Cavaliers were coming off just their third road win of the
season, an 87-79 victory over the Seattle SuperSonics on Sunday. But
they lacked energy against the Trail Blazers.

"I knew they were gonna beat us tonight,'' Cavs coach John
Lucas said. "They're just more talented than we are.''

It was never much of a contest, as the Blazers led by as many as
30 points. Zach Randolph had a career-high 18 points, while Scottie
Pippen added 16 before resting in the fourth quarter.

After Cleveland kept it close for much of the first quarter,
Pippen hit a 3-pointer that put the Trail Blazers up 24-18 with
3:52 to go. Portland blew it open from there, going on a 19-5
second-quarter run.

Patterson's layup put the Blazers ahead 65-39 for their widest
margin of the half with 35 seconds left, but Jumaine Jones made a
3-pointer before time ran out to get Cleveland within 23 at

"We wanted to take the fight out of them early and not give
them any kind of hope going into the second half,'' Pippen said.

The margin gave the Blazers the opportunity to get a good look
at rookie Qyntel Woods, who had a career-high 14 points in a
season-high 26 minutes. Woods' fastbreak dunk put Portland ahead
100-71 early in the fourth quarter.

"Qyntel was great. You can see his ability,'' Portland coach
Maurice Cheeks said. "The more minutes he plays, the better he
plays. When you see him out there, you are seeing an up-and-coming
talent in this league.''

Cleveland Rookie guard Dajuan Wagner, limited Sunday by a
bruised left heel, did not start but scored 14 points in 32
minutes. Wagner is the league's top rookie scorer at 16.7 points
per game.

Damon Stoudamire, the Blazers' disgruntled guard, was back on
the bench after making appearances in the past two games.
Stoudamire has publicly complained about his minutes this season.

Game notes
Further details about Wells' injury were not available.
After the game, the team said he was day-to-day. ... Cleveland's
Smush Parker left during the second quarter with a sprained right
ankle, but he returned. ... Portland's 65 first-half points tied
for the team's most this season. ... The Trail Blazers had 32
assists. Pippen led the way with six. "We did a great job of
sharing the ball tonight, especially in the second half,'' he said.
"It's a lot of fun when you play that way.''


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