Regular Season Series (Game 1 of 4)

Series starts 11/5

Game 1: Friday, November 5th
Trail Blazers94
Game 2: Wednesday, January 5th
Trail Blazers98Final
Game 3: Friday, January 28th
Trail Blazers90
Game 4: Monday, March 21st
Trail Blazers89Final

Clippers 81

(1-1, 0-1 away)

Trail Blazers 94

(2-0, 1-0 home)

    7:00 PM ET, November 5, 2004

    Moda Center, Portland, OR

    1 2 3 4 T
    LAC 20 28 17 1681
    POR 29 29 21 1594

    Top Performers

    Los Angeles: C. Wilcox 27 Pts, 10 Reb, 1 Stl, 1 Blk

    Portland: S. Abdur-Rahim 22 Pts, 8 Reb, 1 Ast, 5 Stl, 2 Blk

    Ratliff ties career and franchise marks with 9 blocked shots

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- Deflecting any credit, Portland's Theo Ratliff attributes his shot-blocking success to his opponents.

    In this case, the Los Angeles Clippers.

    "That means that they were attacking the basket a lot," Ratliff said after he tied both his career and the franchise mark with nine blocked shots and the Trail Blazers beat the Clippers 94-81 on Friday night.

    "We started the game off settling for inside shots, but I think Theo Ratliff got in our heads a little and we started settling for outside shots. I think Ratliff erased about six shots at the basket," Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy said.

    Zach Randolph, who recently signed a six-year, $84 million contract extension, scored 14 points and had 14 rebounds as Portland put together back-to-back victories to open a season for the first time since 1999, when the team started 4-0.

    But it wasn't the scoring that dictated the game -- it was Ratliff.

    Last season at Orlando, Ratliff tied Portland's franchise record for blocked shots in a game with nine, a mark he shares with Bill Walton and Mychal Thompson.

    Ratliff, who has led the NBA in blocked shots for three of the past four seasons, had six blocks in the first quarter.

    "We're pushing guys baseline and forcing them down and I'm just coming over from the weak side," Ratliff said. "Athletic guys always come in and double-clutch and when they do that I know I've got them."

    The Clippers, who beat the Seattle SuperSonics by 30 points in their opener, have not opened a season with consecutive wins since 1990. It had been eight seasons since they won an opener.

    They were led by Chris Wilcox, with a career-high 27 points and 10 rebounds.

    Clippers forward Bobby Simmons, starting in place of the injured Kerry Kittles, didn't score in the first half against Portland, after a career-high 30 points against the Sonics. He finished with four points.

    Kittles is on the injured list because of a sore right knee.

    Ratliff's performance came at a perfect time for the Blazers, who are thin at center. Vladimir Stepania is on the injured list with a sore right knee, while Joel Przybilla has a sprained left ankle.

    The Blazers won their opener, 78-75 on Wednesday night at Golden State, when former Warriors player Nick Van Exel scored 13 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter.

    Van Exel's 3-pointer from the wing put the Blazers up 88-73 late in the fourth quarter against the Clippers, matching the team's biggest lead. He finished with 10 points.

    Shareef Abdur-Rahim had 22 points for the Blazers, along with a career-high five steals.

    Portland has won six of its last seven home openers.

    There was a scary moment late in the fourth quarter when Blazers forward Ruben Patterson barreled uncontrollably into Maurice Cheeks, flattening the Portland coach on the scorer's table. It took Cheeks several uncomfortable moments to get up.

    "I think I'll be a little more sore tomorrow," Cheeks said. "I didn't even see Ruben, he kind of caught me off guard. That was a perfect example of wing denial right there."

    Game notes

    The Clippers haven't won in Portland since April 11, 1999, dropping 11 straight. ... One fan held a sign in support of Portland forward Qyntel Woods, who has been suspended indefinitely without pay by the Blazers while the team looks into allegations Woods may have been involved in dog fighting. The sign read: "QW for Prez." ... Blazers forward Darius Miles injured his finger while dunking late in the third quarter.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 81 94
    FGM-FGA 36-82 (.439) 39-79 (.494)
    3PM-3PA 2-12 (.167) 4-8 (.500)
    FTM-FTA 7-10 (.700) 12-17 (.706)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 12-32 12-42
    Assists 21 24
    Turnovers 18 13
    Steals 8 14
    Blocks 9 13
    Fast Break Points 5 8
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 17 (0/0) 15 (1/0)

    Top Performers

    Los Angeles
    Chris Wilcox Wilcox
    Points: 27
    Reb: 10
    Ast: 0
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 1
    Shareef Abdur-Rahim Abdur-Rahim
    Points: 22
    Reb: 8
    Ast: 1
    Stl: 5
    Blk: 2