Trail Blazers suffer 3rd worst loss in history at Miami Heat

Portland Trail Blazers v Miami Heat

Patty Mills #88 of the Miami Heat shoots the ball against the Portland Trailblazers during the first half at the Kaseya Center on March 29, 2024 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Lauren Sopourn/Getty Images)Getty Images

Deandre Ayton and Matisse Thubulle returned to the rotation for the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night and were greeted rather rudely by the Miami Heat.

The Heat led 29-19 after the first quarter then went off for 45 points in the second quarter to lead 74-30 at halftime. The Blazers never remotely got back into the game and fell 142-82, the third most lopsided defeat in franchise history.

“It was just a rough one,” Blazers coach Chauncey Billups told reporters. “It was just a rough one for everybody.”

Not quite everybody. Ayton, who missed four games with elbow tendinitis, did all he could during a dreadful first half by scoring 16 points on 8-of-13 shooting.

“We were happy to have him,” Billups said. “DA was his normal efficient self. He was very efficient and he was good on the glass. I’m pretty sure he felt good just kind of getting back out there after being down for a while. I thought he did the best that he could.”

The rest of the Blazers shot 10 of 32 (31.3%) from the field in the first half and 1 of 14 from three-point range while committing 10 turnovers.

For the game, the Blazers shot 39.8% from the field and 5 on 31 threes (16.1%). The Blazers committed 24 turnovers on the night.

Billups briefly discussed how the Blazers started off playing clean basketball. They led 11-10 about four minutes into the game.

“It didn’t last long,” Billups said. “It happened pretty quick where we couldn’t score. We couldn’t get in the paint. We try to make a point, always, of getting the ball to the paint. Collapsing defenses and then create the chase, is what I call it.”

Instead, Miami prevented the Blazers from accomplishing their goal.

“Their defense, they got physical,” Billups said. “And we couldn’t get to the paint. And we just kind of settled, settled, settled. We turned it over. And we had a lot of what I call ‘shooting turnovers,’ which are just horrible shots that might as well be a turnover. And everything just kind of went bad at the same time.”

Ayton, who played just over five minutes in the second half, finished with 18 points and eight rebounds. Scoot Henderson led the Blazers with 20 points with six assists but also committed seven turnovers.

Dalano Banton, who set a career high with 31 points during Wednesday’s loss at Atlanta, shot just 5 of 19 against the Heat for 12 points.

The Heat did whatever they wanted on offense, shooting 59.3% from the field and 21 of 39 on threes (53.8%).

The Heat had six players with double-digit scoring, four over 20. Thomas Bryant led the Heat with 26 points off the bench. Terry Rozier scored 22 with six assists.


The Blazers (19-55) lost their ninth consecutive game to match their longest losing streak of the season. The Heat (40-33) remained in seventh place in the Eastern Conference, slightly ahead of the Philadelphia 76ers (39-35).


The 60-point defeat is the third-worst in franchise history. Earlier this season, Portland lost 139-77 at Oklahoma City. That 62-point defeat ranks second all-time. The Blazers’ worst loss in franchise history came Feb. 27, 1998, at Indiana by the score of 124-59 (65 points).


The Blazers guard returned to action but didn’t last long. Thybulle played seven minutes before leaving the game with a right ankle impingement. He had missed five games with an ankle injury leading up to Friday night.


The Blazers play at 4 p.m. Monday at the Orlando Magic.

-- Aaron Fentress | | @AaronJFentress (Twitter), @AaronJFentress (Instagram), @AaronFentress (Facebook)


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