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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- PORTLAND 25 16 23 12 76 HOUSTON 19 19 25 23 86 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: POR - DAMON STOUDAMIRE 19, ARVYDAS SABONIS 14, TWO PLAYERS WITH 12 HOU - SCOTTIE PIPPEN 31, CHARLES BARKLEY 20, TWO PLAYERS WITH 8

HIGH REBOUND: POR - BRIAN GRANT 16, TWO PLAYERS WITH 5 HOU - CHARLES BARKLEY 12, SCOTTIE PIPPEN 7

HIGH ASSISTS: POR - DAMON STOUDAMIRE 6, ARVYDAS SABONIS 4 HOU - CHARLES BARKLEY 9, FOUR PLAYERS WITH 3

ATT: 16,285


Extended Box

PORTLAND (76) AT HOUSTON (86)

PORTLAND REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

AUGMON F 31 6-11 0-0 2 0 2 1 3 3 2 12 GRANT F 37 3-7 6-6 2 14 16 0 3 0 5 12 SABONIS C 31 5-8 4-6 2 3 5 4 0 1 1 14 RIDER G 33 3-10 1-1 0 3 3 0 2 1 1 8 STOUDAMIRE G 35 8-14 2-2 1 4 5 6 1 1 1 19 ANTHONY 13 0-5 0-0 1 1 2 1 0 2 0 0 CATO 5 0-1 0-0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 0 JACKSON 21 0-6 0-0 0 3 3 2 1 0 2 0 WALLACE 23 4-7 3-4 0 3 3 0 5 0 1 11 WILLIAMS 11 0-2 0-0 0 1 1 0 1 1 1 0 ONEAL DNP - COACH'S DECISION WELLS DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 29-71 16-19 8 33 41 14 17 9 14 76 (.408) (.842) TEAM REBS: 5 TOTAL TO: 15(15 PTS)

HOUSTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

BARKLEY F 43 9-14 2-2 2 10 12 9 1 2 3 20 PIPPEN F 44 12-17 1-5 1 6 7 3 2 2 2 31 OLAJUWON C 43 1-6 4-6 1 5 6 3 2 2 4 6 DICKERSON G 17 2-5 0-0 0 0 0 3 2 0 1 4 MOBLEY G 23 2-8 0-0 0 1 1 1 1 0 0 5 BULLARD 4 0-0 0-0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 CARR 7 2-3 0-0 0 2 2 0 1 0 0 4 DREW 26 3-9 0-0 0 1 1 2 3 1 1 8 HARRINGTON 3 0-2 0-0 0 0 0 0 4 0 0 0 MACK 30 2-10 2-2 1 3 4 3 2 1 0 8 MALONEY DNP - COACH'S DECISION MILLER DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 33-74 9-15 5 29 34 24 18 8 11 86 (.446) (.600) TEAM REBS: 12 TOTAL TO: 11(5 PTS)

PORTLAND 25 16 23 12 - 76 HOUSTON 19 19 25 23 - 86

BLOCKED SHOTS: PORTLAND - JACKSON, AUGMON. HOUSTON - PIPPEN 3, OLAJUWON 2, BARKLEY. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: PORTLAND 2-16 (.125), SABONIS 0-2, RIDER 1-3, STOUDAMIRE 1-3, ANTHONY 0-3, JACKSON 0-3, WILLIAMS 0-2. HOUSTON 11-27 (.407), BARKLEY 0-1, PIPPEN 6-11, DICKERSON 0-1, MOBLEY 1-3, DREW 2-3, MACK 2-8. TECHNICALS: HOUSTON - DICKERSON. OFFICIALS: MIKE MATHIS, KEN MAUER, HANK ARMSTRONG. A - 16,285. T - 2:05.


Box Score

PORTLAND (76) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Augmon 31 6-11 0-0 2-2 1 3 12 Grant 37 3-7 6-6 2-16 0 3 12 Sabonis 31 5-8 4-6 2-5 4 0 14 Rider 33 3-10 1-1 0-3 0 2 8 Stoudamire 35 8-14 2-2 1-5 6 1 19 Anthony 13 0-5 0-0 1-2 1 0 0 Cato 5 0-1 0-0 0-1 0 1 0 Jackson 21 0-6 0-0 0-3 2 1 0 Wallace 23 4-7 3-4 0-3 0 5 11 Williams 11 0-2 0-0 0-1 0 1 0 Oneal DNP - coach's decision Wells DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 29-71 16-19 8-41 14 17 76 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.408, FT-.842. 3-Point Goals: 2-16, .125 (Sabonis 0-2, Rider 1-3, Stoudamire 1-3, Anthony 0-3, Jackson 0-3, Williams 0-2). Team rebounds: 5. Blocked shots: 2 (Jackson, Augmon). Turnovers: 15 (Grant 5, Augmon 2, Jackson 2, Rider, Sabonis, Stoudamire, Wallace, Williams). Steals: 9 (Augmon 3, Anthony 2, Rider, Sabonis, Stoudamire, Williams).

HOUSTON (86) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Barkley 43 9-14 2-2 2-12 9 1 20 Pippen 44 12-17 1-5 1-7 3 2 31 Olajuwon 43 1-6 4-6 1-6 3 2 6 Dickerson 17 2-5 0-0 0-0 3 2 4 Mobley 23 2-8 0-0 0-1 1 1 5 Bullard 4 0-0 0-0 0-1 0 0 0 Carr 7 2-3 0-0 0-2 0 1 4 Drew 26 3-9 0-0 0-1 2 3 8 Harrington 3 0-2 0-0 0-0 0 4 0 Mack 30 2-10 2-2 1-4 3 2 8 Maloney DNP - coach's decision Miller DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 33-74 9-15 5-34 24 18 86 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.446, FT-.600. 3-Point Goals: 11-27, .407 (Barkley 0-1, Pippen 6-11, Dickerson 0-1, Mobley 1-3, Drew 2-3, Mack 2-8). Team rebounds: 12. Blocked shots: 6 (Pippen 3, Olajuwon 2, Barkley). Turnovers: 11 (Olajuwon 4, Barkley 3, Pippen 2, Dickerson, Drew). Steals: 8 (Barkley 2, Olajuwon 2, Pippen 2, Drew, Mack). ____________________________________________ Portland 25 16 23 12 - 76 Houston 19 19 25 23 - 86 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: Houston 1 (Dickerson, 5:02 1st). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 16,285. T: 2:05. Officials: Mike Mathis, Ken Mauer, Hank Armstrong.


Game Story

HOUSTON (Ticker) -- Scottie Pippen scored none of his season-high 31 points in the fourth quarter but led a strong defensive effort in the period to help the Houston Rockets earn a pivotal 86-76 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers.

Pippen had two of his three blocked shots in the fourth, when the Rockets held Portland to a dismal 3-of-15 from the field. The Blazers were outscored 23-12 in the period, recording their lowest-scoring quarter of the season.

"I just came out and played a little more aggressive tonight," said Pippen, who also had three of his seven rebounds in the fourth quarter.

"Scottie stepped up for them tonight," said Blazers guard Damon Stoudamire. "He's been there before. He knows how big these games are down the stretch, and he stepped up for them."

Charles Barkley also was key defensively and nearly recorded a triple-double with 20 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists. He scored eight points in the final quarter, including six in a decisive 17-6 run.

"This is as well as we have played for all four quarters this year," Barkley said. "We didn't give them any easy baskets and that's what they thrive on. They're not as good in their half-court offense."

Sam Mack highlighted the burst with back-to-back 3-pointers and rookie Bryce Drew capped it with a 3-pointer, giving Houston an 82-71 cushion with 1:20 to play. The Rockets finished 11-of-27 from beyond the arc while limiting Portland to 2-of-16.

The Blazers, at least temporarily, had their reign as the NBA's top team come to an end. They fell to 29-9 and dropped one-half game behind Utah, which is playing the Los Angeles Clippers.

Since suffering their worst loss of the season -- a 111-71 setback in Portland on March 7 -- the Rockets have won both meetings between the teams. Houston has inched within one-half game of third-place San Antonio in the Western Conference and sits 3 1/2 games in back of Portland.

"I'll put this one up as our best win of the year, period," said Rockets coach Rudy Tomjanovich. "This feels real good right now."

Stoudamire scored 19 points to pace the Blazers, who have dropped three of their last five games since winning 10 of 11.

Pippen tied a career high with six 3-pointers, including three in the third quarter. He exploded for 18 points in that period, but the Blazers managed to come away with a 64-63 lead.

"You've got to take what the defense gives you and tonight they gave me the shots," Pippen said. "I felt very good tonight. I had my legs and a good rhythm for the whole game."

"We decided to double-team the low post and when we did they got some open 3s," said Blazers coach Mike Dunleavy. "We wanted to see Pippen make a few before we adjusted our defense. He had a great night tonight."

Hakeem Olajuwon, the Rockets' leading scorer, was limited to six points but hit a 17-footer -- his only field goal of the game -- to spark the pivotal burst and put Houston ahead for good, 67-65.

The margin was 71-70 with less than four minutes remaining when Mack buried his pair of 3-pointers. All of his eight points came in the fourth quarter.

Barkley followed with a driving layup for a 79-71 lead and shortly thereafter, Pippen rejected a driving attempt by Isaiah Rider. After a free throw by Rasheed Wallace, Barkley found Drew for the backbreaking 3-pointer and Portland failed to cut the deficit under double digits the rest of the way.

"We didn't get any points from anybody," said Rider, who was held to eight points. "Damon was the only guy who had a good game tonight."

Houston scored seven points off five Portland turnovers in the final period after managing only eight off 10 turnovers through the first three quarters.

"It was a combination of their defense being very good and us not getting any easy baskets," Blazers coach Mike Dunleavy said of the fourth quarter. "It was a contributing factor on why they won the game."

Olajuwon failed to lead the Rockets in scoring for the first time in eight games. He scored 27 points in a 102-85 victory over Vancouver on Wednesday, when Pippen and Barkley combined for 11 points.

Arvydas Sabonis scored 14 points and Brian Grant and Stacey Augmon added 12 apiece for Portland, which scored five points off 11 Houston turnovers. Grant pulled down 16 rebounds to lead the Blazers to a 41-34 edge on the glass.

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