Davis returns, leads Pelicans past Blazers, 119-113


Anthony Davis crossed up his defender with a behind-the-back dribble, exploded toward the hoop and scored despite being fouled.

Clearly, Davis’ recently sprained right ankle was holding up well.

Davis scored 36 points, grabbed five of his nine rebounds on the offensive end and blocked two shots, and the New Orleans Pelicans beat the Portland Trail Blazers 119-113 on Friday night.

“His presence tonight, it was felt tonight throughout the entire game,” said Pelicans center DeMarcus Cousins, whose 24-point, 19-rebound performance also included an alley-oop lob to Davis for a two-handed jam. “Throw him the ball and get out the way. That’s our finisher. That’s our scorer, so it kind of takes a load off of everybody on the floor. Easy target.”

Jrue Holiday scored 25 points for New Orleans, which hit the halfway point of the regular season one game above .500 and in the Western Conference playoff picture.

“This was one we needed to have,” said Davis, who sat out a narrow loss in Memphis on Wednesday night.

Still, the Pelicans have yet to prove they can become more consistent and less sloppy.



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