NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Nikola Mirotic scored a career playoff-best 30 points to go with eight rebounds, three steals and a block, and the New Orleans Pelicans beat the Portland Trail Blazers 119-102 on Thursday night to take a commanding 3-0 lead in their first-round playoff series.
Anthony Davis had 28 points, 11 rebounds, three steals and two blocks for New Orleans, which can advance past the first round of the playoffs for the first time since 2008 with one more victory.
The 6-foot-10 Mirotic, acquired in a midseason trade after DeMarcus Cousins’ season-ending Achilles tear, made 12 of 15 shots, scoring on everything from quick-release 3-pointers to cutting dunks and fast-break layups.
Damian Lillard scored 20 for Portland, but also missed nine of 14 shots. CJ McCollum scored 22 and Al-Farouq Aminu added 21, but Portland trailed by double digits for most of the first half and all of the second.
Game 4 is Saturday.
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