Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 4)

Series starts 12/6

Game 1: Tuesday, December 6th
Trail Blazers85Final
Game 2: Sunday, March 12th
Trail Blazers111
Game 3: Thursday, March 23rd
Trail Blazers108Final
Game 4: Wednesday, April 19th
Trail Blazers96

Suns 101

(43-19, 18-10 away)

Trail Blazers 111

(20-42, 14-17 home)

    6:00 PM ET, March 12, 2006

    Moda Center, Portland, OR

    1 2 3 4 T
    PHX 23 23 33 22101
    POR 22 28 30 31111

    Top Performers

    PHX: S. Nash 13 Pts, 7 Reb, 16 Ast

    Por: Z. Randolph 32 Pts, 14 Reb, 2 Ast, 2 Stl, 1 Blk

    Randloph stays hot, leads Blazers past Suns

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- Zach Randolph has strung together a series of big games, tapping into some of the continuity the Portland Trail Blazers have been lacking.

    Randolph had 32 points and 14 rebounds, and the Trail Blazers snapped a four-game losing streak with a 111-101 victory over the Phoenix Suns on Sunday night.

    In his two previous games, he had 33 and 29 points.

    "If he can learn to bring this every night, this is the kind of consistency and commitment we need," coach Nate McMillan said. "His last couple of games, I like the way he's approached them."

    Steve Blake added 18 points and 13 assists for the Blazers, who had lost nine of 10 and sit at the bottom of the Western Conference.

    "It is motivation," Blake said about upsetting the Suns. "If you can't play for the playoffs, you've got to play for something."

    Shawn Marion had 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Suns, whose six-game road winning streak was snapped.

    "These are games we are supposed to come in there and take care of business and get out of the way," Marion said.

    The game was a complete turnaround from a Dec. 6 matchup, when the Suns handed the Blazers their most lopsided loss of the season, 130-85.

    The Blazers trailed 88-84, but went on a 9-0 run capped by Randolph's layup and free throw to lead 93-88. Portland led the rest of the way, and Randolph hit a 3-pointer with 8.2 seconds to go to punctuate it.

    After taking a hard hit from Randolph late in the game, Suns guard Raja Bell fell to the court with his hands covering his face. As he was helped off, he was clutching his neck, but the injury was not believed to be serious.

    Steve Nash had 13 points and 16 assists in his second game back after missing Thursday's loss to San Antonio with a sprained right ankle. He was back against Minnesota on Saturday night and tied his season high with 31 points and 11 assists in a 110-102 Phoenix victory.

    "In the second half we really fought for it but it came down to the fact that we really couldn't stop them tonight," Nash said.

    The Suns jumped out to a 17-7 lead early, but Portland kept up, taking over the lead late in the first half on Darius Miles' 20-foot jumper.

    Randolph made a desperation halfcourt basket as time ran out in the half to give the Blazers a 70-64 lead.

    "I felt it," Randolph said. "I got a high arch on it and it went in."

    Randolph's third quarter tip-in put the Blazers up 65-54 for their biggest lead of the game. Bell's 3-pointer with 1:31 left briefly gave the Suns back the lead, at 75-74.

    The Blazers are 20-42 and at the bottom of the Western Conference.

    The team's woes aren't limited to their play on the court. Team owner Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft and owner of the Seattle Seahawks, maintains that the team is bleeding money and he can no longer absorb the losses.

    Allen has appealed for a public-private partnership to keep the franchise viable.

    "I've really enjoyed being the owner of the Trail Blazers. I've tried hard to bring the city a championship. Now we are in a tough rebuilding process with a broken financial model. We have asked for help in fixing it," Allen said in a statement posted Friday night on the Blazers' Web site. "If I have to sell the team or if it can't continue, that will be sad."

    Since the NBA trade deadline, when Allen first came forward with his plea to city and state officials, the billionaire has not attended a game.

    Game notes

    Randolph did not start for Portland because he was late to report for Sunday night's game. ... Blazers center Theo Ratliff, who returned to the lineup last week after missing 10 games with a sprained ankle, went limping out of the game in the first quarter. The team reported left ankle tendinitis, and he did not return.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 101 111
    FGM-FGA 41-82 (.500) 46-86 (.535)
    3PM-3PA 13-30 (.433) 9-16 (.563)
    FTM-FTA 6-10 (.600) 10-13 (.769)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 8-30 14-45
    Assists 26 29
    Turnovers 11 14
    Steals 8 7
    Blocks 5 5
    Fast Break Points 7 5
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 14 (1/0) 13 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 10 12

    Top Performers

    Steve Nash Nash
    Points: 13
    Reb: 7
    Ast: 16
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 0
    Zach Randolph Randolph
    Points: 32
    Reb: 14
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 1