New Orleans -- The Pelicans brought undeniable effort in their 119-102 game 3 win over the Trail Blazers, forcing 24 turnovers and getting the ball up-court in transition the entire game, finishing with 32 fast break points.
"I thought we did probably our best job, maybe of the year, as far as getting our hands on balls and things like that," said Pelicans Head Coach Alvin Gentry. "As far as the fast break points, we had said all along that we have to get out and try to create some easy baskets. The way we do that is that we have to run off a miss, not off makes."
"We knew they were going to come in and play desperate," said Anthony Davis, who finished with 28 points and 11 rebounds. "We just tried to match that desperation honestly and play more desperate. They came out early and made some shots but we were able to counter that and start playing a little bit of defense and was able to separate and we just didn't look back. We wanted to make sure we came out with a mindset defensively that we're going to come out, play hard, play for each other, fly around, rebound. And that's what we were able to do tonight."
Nikola Mirotic was an incredible spark for the Pels, leading all scorers with 30 points on a 12 of 15 effort from the floor. He's the third different Pelicans player to score more than 30 points in this series. AD scored 35 in game one, and Jrue Holiday scored 33 in game two.
"I'm really feeling very comfortable and I think finally I found a role here," Mirotic said. "I've been doing what they were expecting me to do. But most important for me, was to show them that I can play some defense-- especially in those kind of games and in the playoffs-- we need everybody defensively."
The Pelicans now have a chance to not only close-out the series at home Saturday, but also to get the series sweep. Tip-off for game 4 is at 4:00 p.m. (CT).