Oden helps Blazers dominate BullsNov 20, 2008 - 7:07 AM By Daniel Cochran PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
PORTLAND, Oregon (Ticker) -- Rookie Greg Oden waited a long time to make his home debut with the Portland Trail Blazers. When he finally took the court at the Rose Garden, he helped lift his team to an epic victory.
Oden registered his second straight double-double on Wednesday as Portland cruised to a 116-74 rout of the Chicago Bulls.
The 20-year-old 7-footer, who missed all of last season after undergoing microfracture knee surgery, had a solid performance in just 17 minutes, collecting 11 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks.
"It always feels good to be playing for the home crowd," said Oden, who received a warm reception from the crowd. "It was good, everyone gave me an ovation. It felt good to be at home."
The Blazers did not need an overwhelming output from the first overall selection in the 2007 draft as they never looked back after Nicolas Batum drilled a 3-pointer in the opening seconds.
Brandon Roy had 20 points and five rebounds for Portland, which went on a 16-3 run to start the game.
"We didn't look at the scoreboard tonight," Roy said. "We came out scrappy and we took them out of their rhythm."
The Blazers ended the first quarter with a 34-13 lead, shooting 59 percent from the field while hitting 4-of-6 3-pointers in the period. Chicago shot just 25 percent, scoring most of its points on fast breaks during that span.
"From start to finish, this was our best game of the season," Blazers coach Nate McMillan said. "We got aggressive from the start, got our rhythm and hit our shots."
Batum was the only starter who did not hit double figures for the Blazers, registering nine points and six boards. Joel Przybilla had 14 points and nine rebounds, with Channing Frye leading the bench with 12 points.
Portland widened its margin in the third quarter, but lost Steve Blake to an apparent head injury. Blake had 10 points and five assists before leaving the game when he was cut on the top of his head by a photographer's camera while diving out of bounds for a loose ball.
Prior to Wednesday, all of Portland's six wins had been decided by eight or less points. McMillan had long emphasized the Blazers' need to close out games sooner.
"We talked about trying to play a full 48 minutes," McMillan said. "I thought we did that, with everybody contributing; everything was working."
Portland maintained a solid lead throughout the second quarter, as the Bulls brought their foul total to 21. In two quarters, Chicago barely matched Portland's first-quarter production, with the half ending, 64-37, in favor of the Blazers.
"They jumped on us early," Bulls coach Vinny Del Negro said. "They put a little pressure on us and got us out of it a little bit. It was just one of those games."
The Bulls, who went 13-28 on the road in 2007, are now 0-5 away from the United Center.
"I don't even know what to say," said Chicago forward Joakim Noah, who had four points before fouling out. "It's a long season, and we've got a lot of growing to do."
Andres Nocioni led Chicago with 13 points while Ben Gordon and Drew Gooden each added 11 points.
"We just came out from the jump and they applied a lot of pressure defensively," Gordon said. "We couldn't get anything going. We could just never get over that hump. It seemed like the game was over before it even started the way we came out tonight."
PORTLAND 116 FINAL
Nov 20 1:03 AM
PORTLAND 88 END, 3RD QTR
Nov 20 12:31 AM
PORTLAND 62 HALFTIME
Nov 19 11:44 PM
PORTLAND 34 END, 1ST QTR
Nov 19 11:06 PM
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