PORTLAND, Oregon (AP) – Bradley Beal had a race night, and in the process, gave the Washington Wizards a rebounding victory that raised morale . 19659008] "I've been thinking too much," Beal said after scoring 51 points, his career-high mark, in a 106-92 win Tuesday night over the Portland Trail Blazers. "Tonight I was just playing and having fun."

The Wizards bounced back from the daunting 116-69 loss Monday night against the Utah Jazz. It was the second largest losing margin in the history of the franchise.

Beal scored 21 field goals against the Blazers, also the best record of his career, and the Wizards led by up to 23 points. Hit five triples. It was the highest number of points scored in Portland by a opposing player.

Beal certainly set the tone, said coach Scott Brooks.

"You never go into a game thinking about one of your best players or best guards in the league going to get 50, but you have the ability to get high numbers when you're aggressive," Brooks said. "We gave him space to work."

Beal said he barely slept after the loss to the Jazz.

"I came into the game with the mentality of being aggressive, especially when I left the game last night and the road. I played the last four or five games," he said.

Damian Lillard finished with 30 points, eight rebounds and nine assists for the Blazers, who have lost three straight at home after returning from a 4-1 trip. [19659008] Portland got hurt in the middle of the fourth quarter when center Jusuf Nurkic limped off the court and into the locker room after hurting his right ankle. He had 15 points and nine rebounds before leaving. Portland said that the X-rays in the ankle were negative.

Playing without the All-Star John Wall for the sixth consecutive game, the Wizards came out as if they did not want to repeat the night before. They continued an 11-0 run to go 31-22 in the first half, crowned by Kelly Oubre Jr.'s jumper, and went on to lead 51-37 at halftime.

Beal scored 19. points from the first half, and the Wizards collectively had 12 steals for the break.

"The best thing about the NBA is that you can recover the next night and that's what happened tonight," said Marcin Gortat.

Portland, meanwhile, had 13 turnovers in half and finished with 18 overall.

The 20-foot Beal jump gave the Wizards a 61-38 lead in the third quarter, but the Blazers recovered 63-52 with Lillard's triple and a free throw.

Lillard seemed to modify his left hip at the end of the quarter, and occasionally grimaced, but had 15 points in the period to help keep the Blazers.

CJ McCollum's layup put Portland in 81-72, but Beal responded with a triple that put him above his previous career mark. Beal had 42 points against Phoenix on November 21 last year.

Al-Farouq Aminu hit a 3-pointer that put Portland within 99-90 with 1:28 left, but that was the closest Portland could get. Beal dunked with 24 seconds to finish his performance.

"I'm not someone who is going to worry too much, especially at the beginning of the year," Lillard said. "We're just not playing well, I think it goes back to the road trip, we did not play very well, but we found ways to win games, we came home and we did not play well offensively or consistently on the defensive."

Portland coach Terry Stotts played a bit with his lineup, starting Aminu and Maurice Harkless as he sent Pat Connaughton and Noah Vonleh to the bench.

The Blazers were coming off a 123-116 loss to New Orleans on Saturday.



Wizards: It was the second of two meetings this season between the teams. Portland won the first 108-105. … Washington swept the series last season, scoring more than 120 points in each. The game was the second of a five-game trip for the Wizards.

Trail Blazers: Evan Turner started the second half for Harkless, who stayed in the Blazers' locker room. The team then said that he had a contusion on his left quadriceps. Harkless said he hoped to be ready for Portland's next game on Saturday.


Beal broke the record of 49, owned by Lou Hudson of Atlanta (11/18/70), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar of Milwaukee (10/18/72) ). Beal said that the last time he scored 50 he was in high school.


The Wizards visit the Suns on Thursday.

The Trail Blazers are the hosts of the Houston Rockets on Saturday. [19659008] NBA photo of the day

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