PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- Sam Cassell scored 18 points and Corey
Maggette added 15 as the Los Angeles Clippers topped the Portland
Trail Blazers 99-85 in a preseason game on Tuesday night.
The Clippers (3-1) never trailed in the game, and led by as many
as 27 points. The Blazers (1-2) shot only 33 percent from the
"We couldn't run offense," Trail Blazers coach Nate McMillan
said. "We weren't making screens, we weren't making hard cuts to
"On defense, our positioning was terrible. Some of these young
guys have never been asked to play the kind of defense it takes to
win in the NBA."
Cassell set the tone by hitting two jumpers in the first 40
seconds of the game. He finished the first quarter with 12 points
as the Clippers jumped to a 32-19 lead. Maggette added nine points
in that quarter.
Despite their poor shooting, the Blazers narrowed the deficit to
40-38 late in the second quarter, after five straight points by
Darius Miles and a lay-up by Sergei Monia. But Rodney White
finished the first half with a 3-pointer and a jumper at the buzzer
to push the Clippers lead to 45-38 at halftime.
Los Angeles then blew the game open with a 13-2 run that made
the score 64-48 with three minutes left in the third quarter. That
lead grew to 88-61 when Quinton Ross hit a jumper midway through
the final period.
The Clippers also got 13 points from reserve forward Chris
Wilcox, who made six of seven shots. As a team, the Clippers hit 53
percent of their attempts.
"It may have been hard to watch for some," McMillan said.
"But this is where patience comes into play -- both from the
players and the fans."
The Blazers, who have hit only 36 percent of their shots in the
preseason, were led by Miles with 15 points. Travis Outlaw came off
the bench to score 14.
Zach Randolph, who was ejected from practice Monday after saying
something McMillan didn't like, had six points on 2-of-11 shooting.