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Trail Blazers 116, Wizards 103

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PORTLAND, Ore. — The Portland Trail Blazers used a second-half 3-point blitzkrieg to break open a tight game and beat the Washington Wizards 116-103 Thursday night at the Moda Center.

Guard Wesley Matthews matched his season high with 28 points, and guard Damian Lillard contributed 23 points, 10 assists and six rebounds for the Trail Blazers, who knocked down 10 of 20 3-pointers after intermission.

Forward Nicolas Batum added 12 points, 14 rebounds and five assists for the Blazers, who won their second straight.

Guard John Wall scored 24 points and handed out 14 assists for the Wizards, who lost for the fourth time in six games. Forward Drew Gooden had 18 points and nine rebounds off the bench for the losers, and guard Bradley Beal added 18 points.

Portland (45-24) shot 50.6 percent from the field, 40 percent from 3-point range and 80 percent from the foul line.

Lillard scored 13 points and Matthews 10 as the Blazers rallied from an eight-point deficit to go into halftime ahead by two.

Portland sank four 3-pointers in the first four minutes of the third quarter to move in front 63-51. The Blazers made 11 of their first 16 shots and knocked down six treys in the quarter, taking an 86-73 edge into the final period.

It was 99-86 midway through the fourth quarter, and the margin extended as high as 17.

With Wall going for 13 points, Washington jumped to a 28-23 lead after one quarter.

The Wizards (35-33) led by eight before the Blazers used a 6-0 run to get within 35-33. Lillard’s two free throws with half a second left sent Portland into intermission with a 53-51 advantage.

NOTES: Portland improved to 21-4 against Eastern Conference opponents, the best record by any Western Conference team this season. … The Trail Blazers are 25-14 in games decided by single digits but 13-13 in games decided by five points or fewer and 2-7 in games decided by two points or fewer. … Entering play Thursday, the Blazers led the league in free-throw percentage (.820). The Wizards ranked 26th (.729). … Before the loss, the Wizards were 10-5 since the All-Star break, tied for the second-best record in the Eastern Conference. … Each team was without it starting power forward — Portland’s LaMarcus Aldridge (back) and Washington’s Nene (knee). Aldridge missed his fourth straight game and Nene his 12th. … Portland was second in the NBA in 3-point attempts (25.2 per game) through Wednesday, but it was down to seventh in 3-point percentage (.375) after leading the league in the latter category for much of the season.

Up to the minute news and reports from the news wire of The Sports Xchange.

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