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Blazers pull away from Nets to snap skid

Jan 16, 2011 - 7:21 AM Portland, OR (Sports Network) - LaMarcus Aldridge scored 27 points, pulled down nine rebounds and dished out five assists, as the Portland Trail Blazers used a late surge to take down the New Jersey Nets, 96-89.

Nicolas Batum added a season-high 23 points and six boards for the Blazers, who snapped a three-game skid. Andre Miller chipped in 19 points and eight assists for Portland, which got 10 points and six rebounds from Wesley Matthews.

Brook Lopez finished with 32 points for the Nets, who have lost five in a row. Sasha Vujacic and Travis Outlaw added 13 and 11 points, respectively. Outlaw also pulled down seven rebounds.

"We had a pretty good flow for 3 1/2 quarters of the game, but we've got to fight through the mental and physical fatigue on the road if we want to be a good team," Nets head coach Avery Johnson said.

Trailing by one, 87-86, with 4:18 to play, the Blazers ended the game on a 10-2 run to claim victory.

Aldridge got the flurry started with a jam. Vujacic then turned the ball over, leading to a pair of Batum free throws. Another New Jersey turnover, this one from Lopez, led to a Matthews layup for a 92-87 game with 1:13 left.

Devin Harris' jumper with 37.9 seconds to go cut the gap to 93-89, but Miller made a pair of foul shots to make it a six-point contest.

Matthews' free throw with 28.2 ticks remaining accounted for the final margin.

"We knew going down the stretch that we needed some stops," Blazers forward Marcus Camby said. "The emphasis in the shoot around today was defense, especially defense in the fourth quarter when we need it the most."

The Nets held a 26-18 edge after 12 minutes of action, and took a 53-46 lead into the locker room.

Portland used a 17-0 run early in the third quarter to go in front. Batum tallied six points during the surge, which Matthews capped with a three- pointer for a 63-55 margin with seven minutes to go.

New Jersey responded with a burst of its own to take back the lead, and the visitors held a 76-74 edge heading to the fourth.

Game Notes

The Nets snapped a four-game skid to the Blazers with a 98-96 triumph in the Garden State back on November 28. New Jersey has lost 13 of 15 and 21 of its last 24 at Portland...Harris ended with eight points and six assists...The Trail Blazers went 20-of-25 from the foul line, while the Nets made 11- of-12 from the charity stripe.