Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum (r) celebrates with Al-Farouq Aminu after a 97-90 win over the Denver Nuggets in game two of the Western Conference semifinals on Wednesday, May 1, 2019. (Photo: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Every time the Denver Nuggets tried to get over the hump, the Portland Trail Blazers had an answer.
The Trail Blazers held off the Nuggets, 97-90, Wednesday night at Pepsi Center and evened their Western Conference semifinal series at one game each.
The Nuggets struggled from the field in the first half, going 14-of-43 (32.6%). The Trail Blaers turned a five-point lead after the first quarter into a 15-point advantage at halftime.
Denver ended the game 34-of-98 from the floor (34.7%) and shot only 34.7% from three-point range (6-of-29).
The closest Denver could get was five points late in the game.
Denver guard Torrey Craig left the game in the first half with a nasal contusion. He returned in the second half wearing a mask and nearly inspired the Nuggets to a comeback win.
Nuggets center Nikola Jokic had 16 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists. Jamal Murray scored 15 points but was only 6-of-18 from the field.
Game three will be in Portland on Friday, May 3.
Postgame comments from Nuggets center Nikola Jokic.
Postgame comments from Nuggets guard Jamal Murray.
Postgame comments from Nuggets forward Paul Millsap.
Postgame comments from Nuggets guard Gary Harris.
Postgame comments from Nuggets head coach Michael Malone.
Postgame comments from Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard.
Postgame comments from Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum.
Postgame comments from Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts.