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Holiday party: Pelicans hold off Blazers, take 2-0 series lead

Several times during the three days between the New Orleans Pelicans’ Game 1 road win over the Trail Blazers on Saturday and their Game 2 matchup on Tuesday,shop nfl jerseys online Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry was asked if he worried that his team would be complacent after stealing home-court advantage in the series. Gentry had no such concern.

Why would Gentry worry when he had Anthony Davis and Jrue Holiday on his side? While the Blazers found solutions for their shooting struggles in Game 1, they couldn’t find a way to stop New Orleans’ stars in a 111-102 Pelicans victory that gave New Orleans a commanding 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series heading home for Games 3 and 4.

Although Davis was his usual double-double self (22 points, 13 rebounds) and Rajon Rondo finished an assist away from a triple-double (16 points, 10 rebounds and 9 assists) in another strong playoff performance, this night belonged to Holiday. When the Blazers were able to get their sellout crowd going, it was Holiday to whom Gentry turned to slow down the Pelicans’ usual fast pace and ensure a good shot.
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“He’s so underrated as a guard that can do things on the floor,” Gentry said. “He can get to the basket against just about anybody there is, and his outside shot has really improved.”

Taking advantage of New Orleans’ strong floor spacing, Holiday got wherever he wanted off the pick-and-roll,wholesale nfl jerseys china repeatedly reaching the paint to either finish himself or find an open teammate. According to ESPN Stats & Information tracking, Holiday’s 19 drives yielded 14 points on 7-of-12 shooting by himself and seven points on 3-of-4 shooting by teammates. Holiday scored 20 of his 33 points in the restricted area, shooting 10-of-14 on those attempts, and he handed out nine assists.