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Cavaliers listless in loss against Blazers

Jan 18, 2007 - 7:13 AM PORTLAND, Oregon (Ticker) -- The Cleveland Cavaliers are ready to go home.

The Cavaliers scored just nine points in the first quarter and shot terribly throughout as they dropped an embarrassing 94-76 decision to the Portland Trail Blazers in the fifth game of a season-high seven-game road trip.

Zach Randolph scored 26 points and rookie Brandon Roy posted his second double-double for the Trail Blazers, who had lost 10 of their previous 13 games.

The road trip started with two wins in three games before Cleveland dropped a 101-96 loss to lowly Seattle on Tuesday. With a chance to redeem itself against the struggling Blazers, the Cavaliers played flat throughout and coach Mike Brown pulled his starters with 7:12 remaining and facing an 80-59 deficit.

"They kicked our behind tonight," Brown said. "They executed on both ends of the floor. They just kicked our behind in every category. We should feel ashamed and embarrassed. We didn't move the ball, we didn't dive on the floor, when a ball was loose we stood around and watched, and they were diving on the floor."

Cleveland made just one of its first 10 shots and trailed, 18-9, after one period. After moving within 41-37 at the half, it allowed two big runs in the third quarter as Portland put away the contest.

"We should have been blown out at halftime with just one assist," Brown said. "I feel ashamed and embarrassed and our team should feel the same way. It starts with me though. We just have to keep coaching, keep watching film.

"There was absolutely no resistance by us on either end of the floor tonight. We had seven assists and two of those came in the last minute. We stood around and didn't move the ball."

Sparked by Randolph, who finished with 12 rebounds and four assists, and Roy, who drained half of his 16 shots and secured 10 rebounds and six steals, Portland went on an early 13-1 run and closed the period on a 10-3 spurt for a 70-51 lead.

"When you hear Lebron (James) get a better ovation than we do, it kinda motivates you a little bit," Roy said. "I felt good tonight. I felt I had good energy and was able to make a couple early shots to get me in a nice rhythm. I was able to keep it going and feed off my teammates energy a little tonight."

James scored 23 points on 8-of-21 shooting and seemed bothered by the defense of Ime Udoka.

"We coud have given a better effort at times, " James said. "It was just one of those games. All teams have them - it happens. I know my legs weren't as good as they usually are on my jump shot. Every time I moved I just couldn't get under it; I don't know what it was. It was a night where they played pretty good and we played really bad. That's a bad combination to have."

"Ime Udoka did a great job against (James)," Portland coach Nate McMillan said. "He is a physical player defensively and we knew he was going to play Lebron like that because that's how he always plays. He always gets the toughest assignments and does well because that is how he practices."

Larry Hughes scored 17 points but shot just 3-of-12 for the Cavaliers, who shot 35 percent (23-of-65) and committed 16 turnovers.

"We have to be ready and come out and play," Hughes said. "It's a long season so you can't get too down or too high. We struggled and they were able to pull away tonight."

Cleveland closes out the road trip at Denver on Friday and Golden State on Saturday.

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