The Portland Trail Blazers made easy work of the Phoenix Suns to open the 2017-18 NBA season. Playing on Wednesday night (Oct. 18), the Blazers were on the road but raced out to a quick lead that they wouldn’t give up for the entire night. This was the largest margin of victory in the history of the NBA on opening night, with the Blazers making a bit of history with the one-sided performance and winning 124-76.

After ending the first quarter with a comfortable 29-21 lead, the Blazers would race to a 60-35 lead by halftime and then push the score to 98-55 at the end of three quarters.

This allowed Blazers coach Terry Stotts to tinker with the lineup he had on the court and to use his bench for a lot of minutes in the second half. On a night where the Blazers were missing starting guard C.J. McCollum due to a one-game suspension, that was a nice asset for the coach to work with.

Leaders of the game for Blazers

The Portland Trail Blazers worked with a starting five of Damian Lillard, Evan Turner, Maurice Harkless, Al-Farouq Aminu, and Jusuf Nurkic on Wednesday night. Lillard would lead the way with 27 points in just 29 minutes of action, while Turner chipped in 12 points and Nurkic had 11 points and 11 rebounds. No starter had to play more than 29 minutes in this game, allowing Stotts to ease the team into the 2017-18 NBA season.

Off the bench, Pat Connaughton led the way with 24 points in 32 minutes, shooting a nice 9-of-14 from the field to show that he might be the perfect replacement for Allen Crabbe. Shabazz Napier added 10 points in 22 minutes, Ed Davis had 10 points in 13 minutes, and Caleb Swanigan finished with eight points in 17 minutes. Zach Collins, who the Blazers acquired during the 2017 NBA Draft, missed the game due to illness.

As a team, the Blazers shot 48.9 percent from the field and an amazing 58.3 percent from three-point range.

What’s next for Rip City?

The Portland Trail Blazers continue this road trip to open the season with a game against the Indiana Pacers on Friday night (Oct. 20). Start time is 4 PM PT, with the Pacers looking to continue a rebuild that began with the trade of Paul George to the Oklahoma City Thunder.

McCollum and Collins will be ready to re-join the rotation and the Blazers are favored to win this game, but anything can happen in the NBA. Following the game against the Pacers, the Blazers will play the Milwaukee Bucks at 5:30 PM PT on Saturday (Oct. 21).

The home-opener comes next Tuesday (Oct. 24) when the Blazers host the New Orleans Pelicans. They will then host the Los Angeles Clippers (Oct. 26), Phoenix Suns (Oct. 28), and Toronto Raptors (Oct. 30) during the week-long homestand. That will also wrap up the month of October for the Blazers within their 2017-18 NBA schedule. While it might be difficult to replicate the 48-point win to open the season, the Portland Trail Blazers certainly have fans excited about what this season might become.