Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 2)

Series starts 1/27

Game 1: Friday, January 27th
Trail Blazers88
Game 2: Wednesday, March 15th
Trail Blazers65Final

Trail Blazers 65

(20-44, 6-27 away)

Nets 78


    7:30 PM ET, March 15, 2006

    IZOD Center, East Rutherford, NJ

    1 2 3 4 T
    POR 24 16 20 565
    NJ 23 19 15 2178

    Top Performers

    Por: Z. Randolph 24 Pts, 7 Reb, 4 Ast, 2 Stl

    NJ: R. Jefferson 22 Pts, 9 Reb, 2 Ast

    Nets hold Blazers to 5 fourth-quarter points in win

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- The New Jersey Nets relied on their defense to win one of their ugliest games of the season.

    Vince Carter scored 26 points and the Nets held the Portland Trail Blazers to a team record-low five points in the fourth quarter of a 78-65 victory Wednesday night. The five points was the second lowest in a fourth quarter since the 24-second shot clock was instituted for the 1954-55 season.

    Golden State scored two points in the fourth quarter of an 84-81 loss to the Toronto Raptors on Feb. 8, 2004.

    "They aren't all masterpieces but we found a way to win," Nets coach Lawrence Frank said. "It's nice that you can win and shoot 39 percent."

    Richard Jefferson had 22 points and Nenad Krstic added 20 for the Nets, who have won three straight.

    Jason Kidd, who was battling a head cold, had six rebounds and seven assists for the Nets but failed to score for the first time in a regular-season game since March 22, 2000 as a member of the Phoenix Suns. In the playoffs, Kidd went scoreless in the Nets' Game 7 Eastern Conference playoff loss to the Detroit Pistons on May 20, 2004.

    "Good teams win the ugly games," Kidd said. "We didn't play extremely well on the offensive end. Our defense did a wonderful job. We are going in the right direction."

    The 65 points equaled the third fewest allowed by the Nets and marked the second dismal effort in two nights for Portland. The Trail Blazers lost 95-66 at Chicago on Tuesday night.

    Zach Randolph had 24 points for the Trail Blazers, who dropped their eighth straight on the road. Reserve Darius Miles added 14 points and Steve Blake had 12 points and 10 assists.

    Krstic scored the first four points of the fourth quarter and Lamond Murray followed with a 3-pointer as the Nets took a 64-60 lead.

    The Blazers' first point of the final quarter came 4:24 in when Randolph made one of two free throws. Portland missed its first six shots from the field as the Nets methodically built their lead. Portland finished the final quarter 1-for-13 from the field and was outscored 21-5.

    "Defensively, they tightened up," Trail Blazers coach Nate McMillan said. "We had a stretch of about 11 minutes where we didn't score and we were careless with the ball."

    Blake knew it was a tough final quarter but seemed stunned when told his team scored only five.

    "I didn't know it was that low," Blake said. "It's the result of too many turnovers, not executing on offense and not making shots. It's real frustrating."

    Early in the third quarter, Carter hit a 3-pointer from the right corner to give the Nets a 47-45 lead. The basket ignited an 11-2 New Jersey run as Krstic and Jefferson each chipped in four points. The Nets could have broke open the game, but shot only 7-for-19 in the quarter.

    Portland rallied to regain the lead as Miles scored on a layup and a jumper in the final 1:44 of the period to give the Blazers a 60-57 lead.

    Portland led 24-23 after one period as Martell Webster scored nine points. Portland shot 10-of-17 from the field, a sharp improvement over its 35 percent shooting in Tuesday's loss. Portland did not score more than 19 points in any quarter in that defeat.

    Points were scarce for both teams in the second quarter as the Nets outscored the Blazers 19-16 to take a 42-40 lead at the half. New Jersey closed out the period on a 10-2 run, with Krstic scoring five points.

    Game notes

    Theo Ratliff returned for Portland after missing one game with a left ankle injury. ... Juan Dixon sat out a third straight game for the Blazers with left knee tendinitis. ...The Nets improved to 20-9 at home. ...The Nets have won four of the last five from the Trail Blazers in New Jersey.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 65 78
    FGM-FGA 26-63 (.413) 30-77 (.390)
    3PM-3PA 3-9 (.333) 7-22 (.318)
    FTM-FTA 10-12 (.833) 11-17 (.647)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 4-37 12-43
    Assists 19 23
    Turnovers 22 15
    Steals 10 9
    Blocks 2 4
    Fast Break Points 12 9
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 20 (0/0) 13 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 6 15

    Top Performers

    New Jersey
    Zach Randolph Randolph
    Points: 24
    Reb: 7
    Ast: 4
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 0
    Richard Jefferson Jefferson
    Points: 22
    Reb: 9
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 0