Published: Sat, April 21, 2018
Arts&Culture | By Antoinette Montgomery

Pelicans Take 2-0 Lead Over Portland, Jrue Holiday Shines

Pelicans Take 2-0 Lead Over Portland, Jrue Holiday Shines

No. 6 matchup. They finished a mere game apart in the standings, and even that wasn't set until the final day of the season.

"It's easy math", Stotts said.

But, Holiday pointed to the defense as a whole simply executing the game plan, covering and recovering on screens to ensure no matter what Portland tries to adjust, there's simply nowhere to go. The Heat have held second-half leads in all three games, and they've relied on their balance to offset inconsistent performances from most of their players. Game 4 is Saturday. I would expect for Portland to literally bring everything they have for Saturday's game. I think he really is well aware of where he fits in on this team and what hes capable of doing.” Pelicans head coach, Alvin Gentry talking about Nikos huge transformation on the team since the trade after DeMarcus Cousins season-ending Achilles tear. Damian Lillard and C.J. Defensively, the Pelicans are yielding 110.4 points per game.

"This is a different coverage than I have seen at any point in my career, of course it is in the playoffs because they don't have any other team to worry about right now". But on the following play Nikola Mirotic hit a insane rainbow three to take the lead right back.

"I've got to trust making the right play and when it comes time I got to take my chances and take those tough shots", he said Friday. A backcourt that averaged 48.3 points per game throughout the regular season has been limited to just 38 points per game through two.Holiday has two steals and two blocks in this series, including a monster block down the stretch of Game 1 that sealed it, with Holiday catching up to Pat Connaughton to put the ball back off the backboard in chase-down fashion.

Both Moe Harkless and Evan Turner have been listed as questionable to play in Game 4. Maurice Harkless started in his place, scoring five points in 26 minutes.

The Pelicans appear to be on a mission, and the Blazers just happen to be in the way. When he was shown cheering on his teammates on the main scoreboard, fans erupted into chants of "Boogie!"

In Game 2, Holiday posted 33 points and 9 assists, looking virtually unstoppable on dribble penetration. Scored 62 points in the paint and 32 on fast breaks.

The Pelicans wore their alternate red uniforms, and every fan was given a matching red T-shirt, turning the entire packed seating area into a sea of red.

The large crowd was treated to a masterful game.

The Blazers did nothing to silence the place, shooting about 35 percent and committing six turnovers in the opening quarter.

Meanwhile, New Orleans owns records of 51-34 SU and 48-36-1 ATS.

Mirotic has scored 63 points in the three playoff wins, on 24 of 41 shooting. Portland had come out of the locker room and started with a small 5-0 run. This gives the Pelicans a 2-0 series lead heading back home for games three and four.

"We're not overly excited about anything because we still have two more games we have to win", Gentry said.

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