----- CJ McCollum scores 30 points and Jusuf Nurkic comes up two assists shy of a triple-double as the Trail Blazers punish the Charlotte Hornets Friday night at Moda Center.
Maybe it's time to start an All Star campaign for Jusuf Nurkic. The Bosnian Beast continued his sensational play Friday night finishing with 11 points, 11 rebounds, eight assists, and six blocks on 5-of-6 shooting. The Blazers dominated the Charlotte Hornets 127-96.
Nurkic entered the game averaging 15.3 points and 10.4 rebounds per game while averaging just 27 minutes per contest.
Terry Stotts gave Nurkic a chance to chase a triple-double beginning the final quarter before he took a seat on the bench for the remainder of the game.
''The big fella's been awesome,'' CJ McCollum said. ''He's playing extremely well, he's confident. He's finishing around the basket. But what I like most about him is that he's being aggressive on both ends. Defensively he's protecting the rim for us and being selfish on the offensive end and distributing the ball.''
McCollum continues to show signs he is coming out of his shooting slump. McCollum came out aggressive and got great shots within the flow of the offense. He finished with 30 points on 12-for-20 shooting including 5-for-11 from three-point range.
The Blazers offense was in high-gear from the start. Portland erupted in the first half for 70 points on 54.7% shooting building a 21-point lead. The Blazers remained hot in the third quarter scoring 31 points, extending their lead to 101-68 entering the fourth quarter.
After scoring 56 points in their win Wednesday over Chicago, the Blazers' bench poured in 48 against the Hornets. Evan Turner led the way with 15 points and five rebounds and Nik Stauskas scored 13 points.
The Blazers attacked the Hornets with their defense. Damian Lillard set a career-high with four blocks, Meyers Leonard tied a career-high with three blocks and Nurkic matched his career-best with six blocks. The Blazers had a season-best 16 blocks.
With the win, Portland (26-17) has won four-straight games matching their longest winning-streak of the season.
Up Next- The Trail Blazers play the first of back-to-back road games Sunday evening in Denver against the Nuggets. the game is scheduled to tip off at 5:00 PM.
Chad's Take- The Trail Blazers should be pushing Jusuf Nurkic not CJ McCollum for the All Star game.