Notes: Blazers' Nov. 19 practice

Notes from the Portland Trail Blazers’ practice Thursday morning at the team’s workout facility in Tualatin, Ore.

Blazers guard Steve Blake practiced shooting 3-pointers for more than 40 minutes after the rest of the team had left the court.

Blazers coach Nate McMillan said guard Jerryd Bayless is healthy enough to play. McMillan stated that he made the decision to keep Bayless off the court in Wednesday’s victory over the Detroit Pistons because he wanted to have experienced players in Portland’s second unit.

“We’ve just got to execute with that group,” McMillan said. “I’m trying to get Andre (Miller) back with that group.”

Bayless has played two minutes in Portland’s last three games. He injured his ankle before the start of a Nov. 14 contest against the Charlotte Bobcats.

McMillan said the minutes alloted to each player in Wednesday’s win could be about the same for the Blazers’ upcoming games.

“Possibly,” McMillan said. “I thought last night, we got our bench into the game, and didn’t put that game away in the fourth quarter. But with (Juwan) Howard coming in and rotating for Travis (Outlaw) and getting Miller back with that group to run that team, that’s pretty much the rotation we’ll look at.”

McMillan on the Golden State Warriors:

They’re a team that we haven’t played well against them down in Oakland. And we need to play a better game. They’ve controlled that tempo down there. We’ve got to do a better job of not getting caught up in their tempo, and playing our game. And just taking advantage of our size. They’ve taken advantage of their speed in their building. And in Portland, we’ve been able to control that. But down in Oakland, we seem to get caught up in taking a lot of jump shots from the perimeter — which they will give you — and not attacking the basket and going inside to our big guys.

On the Blazers’ defense:

We can get better. We’re going to need to get better. I think, connected. Our guys have been pretty connected on the defensive end of the floor, as far as if there’s a breakdown, the weak side has been there to cover and support each other. So, just being connected. It’s not a one, two or three-man defense — it’s a five-man defense. And, for the most part, I think our guys have been connected. But I think there’s some things we still could do better. And we’re going to need to.

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