EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- Alonzo Mourning was the lone bright
spot in a game that nearly set the NBA mark for scoring futility.
In his first start since his kidney transplant and his first
since the 2001-02 season, Mourning scored 14 points and powered his
way inside for two key late baskets to help the New Jersey Nets
beat the Trail Blazers 64-60 Tuesday night in what was almost the
lowest scoring game in modern NBA history.
"It's unbelievable because this guy keeps getting better and he
was in a hospital bed with a kidney transplant 11 months ago,"
Nets coach Lawrence Frank said.
The 124-point total was only five off the previous record for
combined scoring futility. Boston beat Milwaukee 62-57 in a game at
Providence, R.I., in 1955, the first year of the NBA's 24-second
If there was a highlight on a very bad night of basketball, it
was Mourning. He also had 12 rebounds in his first start since his
days with the Miami Heat. Mourning played a season-high 37 minutes,
hitting 5 of 10 shots from the field. He also had three blocks.
He was more impressed with the Nets' defense, which set the team
record for fewest points allowed. The old mark was 61 against
Minnesota on Oct. 31, 2003.
"I don't think we have the depth we need in order to outscore
teams," Mourning said. "We have the heart and ability to outwork
The teams needed more than 47 minutes to get past 119.
Portland's Zach Randolph got the honor of reaching the 120-point
mark with a floater with 44.6 seconds to go to cut the Nets' lead
"It started ugly and stayed ugly," Portland forward Shareef
Randolph closed the deficit to two points with two free throws
with 13 seconds remaining, but the undermanned Nets -- who dressed
only 10 players -- iced the game when Jacque Vaughn hit two free
throws with 10.9 seconds to play.
The teams combined for 44 field goals, an NBA record for fewest
in a game. It was one fewer than the old mark set by Miami and
Charlotte on Dec. 20, 2000.
Randolph had 16 points to lead the Trail Blazers, who were
19-for-78 (24.4 percent). Portland was 3-of-19 from 3-point range,
electing to shoot from long range instead of going inside against
New Jersey, which lost big man Jason Collins with an ankle injury
in the first half.
"They packed their defense inside and dared us to hit jumpers
and we couldn't," Randolph said.
New Jersey only attempted seven 3-pointers, but they made their
only 3 in the fourth quarter.
Rodney Buford nailed a 3-pointer with 4:26 to go to give New
Jersey a 55-54 lead. Richard Jefferson, who was a woeful 3-of-11
from the field, followed with another 3-pointer to push the lead to
After an offensive foul, Mourning powered his way inside for a
basket with 3:11 to go and he added another on a pick and roll with
Jefferson with 1:24 left to put New Jersey ahead 62-56.
Abdur-Rahim had 13 points and 12 rebounds for Portland, which
lost its second in a row after starting the season with two wins.
Derek Anderson added 11 points on 3-of-14 shooting.
Damon Stoudamire hit his first two shots and missed his final 10
for the Trail Blazers, who came within two points of breaking their
franchise low for a game.
Despite making only 14 baskets in the opening 36 minutes and
shooting 22.5 percent from the field, the Trail Blazers held a
46-45 lead entering the fourth quarter.
Sebastian Telfair, the Brooklyn high school product who was
the 13th pick in the NBA draft, played two minutes and didn't
score. ... Nets guards Ron Mercer (knee) and Travis Best (ankle)
missed the game. ... Despite being short-handed, Frank didn't use
rookie Nenad Krstic.