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Kanter starts at center in Portland's first game since loss of Nurkic; Curry leads way with 20 points off bench

The schedule and opposition are doing favors for the Trail Blazers as they adjust to the loss of injured center Jusuf Nurkic.

Portland's first game since Nurkic broke his left leg on Monday against Brooklyn was a walk in the park against a shorthanded Chicago Bulls team not particularly strong, anyway.

Blazers coach Terry Stotts was able to use his reserves liberally in a 118-98 victory Wednesday at Chicago that opened a four-game trip.

Portland (47-27), also still without injured guard CJ McCollum, got 70 points from a bench that totaled 124 of the 240 minutes.

Enes Kanter, getting the starting nod at center in place of Nurkic, went 21 minutes and had 13 points (6-of-8 field-goal shooting) and six rebounds.

Damian Lillard sat after 28 minutes, scoring just 11 points on 3-for-12 shooting from the floor (1 of 6 on 3-pointers). He also had seven assists and six rebounds.

Backup guard Seth Curry led the Blazers in scoring with 20 points. He had 4 of 7 from beyond the arc and was 8 of 11 overall from the field in 23 minutes.

Sub Rodney Hood added 15 points. Zach Collins had 12 and Al-Farouq Aminu 12 with 11 rebounds.

The Bulls, who fell to 21-55, did not have any of its top five scorers this season, including guard Zach LaVine (23.7 points per game) and forward Lauri Markkanen (18.7).

Former Portland center Robin Lopez had 15 points and nine rebounds. Shaquille Harrison led the Bulls with 21 points.

Remaining Blazers game on this trip are 4:30 p.m. PT Friday at Atlanta (27-48), 4 p.m. Saturday at Detroit (37-37) and 5 p.m. at Minnesota (33-41).


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