Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — After a disappointing Game 1, LeBron James gave his co-star some space.

Anthony Davis hadn’t looked himself in his Lakers playoff debut, too often settling for jumpers and, by his own self-critique, slow and hesitant on rotations. But after giving Davis time to digest the 0-1 lead the Lakers had ceded to the Portland Trail Blazers, James said the very thing Davis needed to hear: Everything would be OK. Davis. The series. The mission.

“He kind of was there to encourage me and keep me level-headed, because it was just one game,” Davis said. “But our relationship has been great this entire season. I’ve kind of just been leaning on him this entire season to figure out the tricks and trades of playing with a guy like him and a team like this.”

What Davis seemed to realize, and what the Lakers seemed to finally realize Thursday night is that they do have an advantage on their No. 8-seed opponent: They can push them around when they choose.

The one-time bullies of the Western Conference — who twice beat these Trail Blazers in their own gym in December — rediscovered their front-runner mentality with muscular drives to the rim, with urgent strides up and down the court; with 3-pointers and dunks splashing more generously than two nights before, and with rebounds taken right from their opponents’ fingers.

With so many things about these playoffs spun completely topsy-turvy, some normalcy found its way onto the court at last for the Lakers, who completely blew out Portland 111-88. Bench players were allowed to scrimmage for the entire fourth quarter — the Lakers led by as much as 33 points, tying the series at one game apiece and giving the streaking Blazers the smarting feeling of a loss.

  • Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James reacts after a dunk during the third quarter of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James, right, drives the ball against Portland Trail Blazers’Carmelo Anthony, left, during Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

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  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (23) reacts during the third quarter of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    The Los Angeles Lakers bench reacts after a basket against the Portland Trail Blazers during the second half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers’ Damian Lillard looks on from the sideline after hurting his finger and exiting Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Lakers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers defended by Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers and Jusuf Nurkic #27 of the Portland Trail Blazers during the first quarter in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (23) drives the ball against Portland Trail Blazers’ Carmelo Anthony (00) during the third quarter of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ JaVale McGee dunks during the third quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) blocks a shot by Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) as Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma (0) looks on during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    JaVale McGee #7 of the Los Angeles Lakers helps LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers up after a charge against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) celebrates with forward Anthony Davis (3) after making a basket against the Portland Trail Blazers during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers’ Mario Hezonja, right, attacks the basket against Los Angeles Lakers’ Kyle Kuzma (0) during the second quarter in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) controls the ball against Portland Trail Blazers guard Gary Trent Jr. (left) during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers’ Hassan Whiteside (21) blocks a dunk-attempt by Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis (3) during the third quarter of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James draws a foul from the Portland Trail Blazers during the second quarter in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ Dwight Howard shoots over Portland Trail Blazers’ Hassan Whiteside during the second quarter in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers’ Carmelo Anthony looks to pass as Los Angeles Lakers’ Markieff Morris defends during the second quarter in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers guard JR Smith (21) shoots a basket against Portland Trail Blazers forward Mario Hezonja (44) during the second half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (1) dunks during the third quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) and Portland Trail Blazers guard Gary Trent Jr. (2) battle for a loose ball during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) celebrates with guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (1) after being fouled while making making a basket against the Portland Trail Blazers during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum (3) celebrates with guard Damian Lillard (0) after making a three-point basket against the Los Angeles Lakers during the second half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers’ Damian Lillard draws a foul while scoring a basket against Los Angeles Lakers’ JaVale McGee during Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) and forward Kyle Kuzma (0) and guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, second from right, and forward Anthony Davis (3) huddle during the first half against the Portland Trail Blazers during Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) shoots a layup over Portland Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic (27) and forward Carmelo Anthony (00) and guard Damian Lillard (0) during the first half in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) looks on during the second half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) drives against Los Angeles Lakers guard Alex Caruso (4) during the first half in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers’ Damian Lillard goes up for a basket during the first quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel reacts during the first half against the Portland Trail Blazers during Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts shouts instructions to his players during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against Los Angeles Lakers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (23) draws a foul on Portland Trail Blazers’ Jusuf Nurkic during the second quarter in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) drives against Los Angeles Lakers guard Alex Caruso (4) during the first half in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers’ CJ McCollum goes for a lay-up in front of Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James during the second quarter during the second quarter in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma (0) shoots over Portland Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic (27) during the first half in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James reacts after drawing an offensive foul during the third quarter of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis goes for a dunk during the second quarter of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James reacts to a call during the first quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers’ Carmelo Anthony goes for a pass during the second quarter of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Lakers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel, right, talks with forward Anthony Davis (3) during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) shoots over Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) and guard Danny Green (14) during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers’ Jusuf Nurkic shoots against Los Angeles Lakers’ Kyle Kuzma during the second quarter in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum (3) controls the ball against Los Angeles Lakers guard Danny Green (14) during the first half in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers with a lau-up during the first quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) shoots over Portland Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic (27) and guard Gary Trent Jr. (2) and guard CJ McCollum (3) during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis (3) is charged with offensive basket interference during the second quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers and Danny Green #14 of the Los Angeles Lakers reacts to a foul during the first quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers with a lau-up during the first quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) and Portland Trail Blazers guard Gary Trent Jr. (2) battle for a loose ball during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (1) helps up teammate Anthony Davis during the second quarter of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers guard Danny Green (14) and forward Anthony Davis, center, and forward LeBron James react during the first half against the Portland Trail Blazers of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic, left, shoots over Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma (0) during the first half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers draws a foul after scoring a basket against JaVale McGee #7 of the Los Angeles Lakers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum (3) makes a basket over Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) during the second half of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers reacts to a foul during the first quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis, left, and Portland Trail Blazers’ Wenyen Gabriel fight for a loose ball during the second quarter during the second quarter in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James, second from right, Kyle Kuzma (0) and Anthony Davis, right, look on at the half during Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope reacts after his three-point basket during the third quarter of Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis, left, and Portland Trail Blazers’ Wenyen Gabriel fight for a loose ball during the second quarter during the second quarter in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    Los Angeles Lakers coach Frank Vogel with Dwight Howard during the second quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 2 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    JR Smith #21 of the Los Angeles Lakers reacts before the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    The Los Angeles Lakers kneel during the national anthem prior to the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers and Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers before the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

  • Lakers punish Trail Blazers in Game 2 blowout that leaves Damian Lillard injured

    The Los Angeles Lakers warm up prior to the start of the game against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game Two of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 20, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Davis was the most transformed, from a meek, midrange shooter in Game 1 to a relentless two-way aggressor in Game 2. While he only scored three more points (31), he made five more shots on three fewer attempts in just three quarters, driving in against a largely helpless Wenyen Gabriel and Jusuf Nurkic to push inside for his points. On the other end, Davis helped on Portland’s red-hot shooters — helping hold Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum to just 12 of 30 shooting from the floor.

Davis used the words “desperation” and “urgency” — the first time the Lakers have showed those things on the court since March, before the hiatus.

The night was over for the Blazers in the third quarter, when Davis finally found his shooting touch, scoring eight straight points including a pair of 3-pointers to push the lead to insurmountable.

The Trail Blazers were also forced to disengage late in the third when Lillard, the offensive superhero of the bubble, walked off court wincing after dislocating his left index finger. An X-ray came back negative for fractures, but it’s a major concern for a Blazers team that is already injured and has spent three weeks punching above its weight.

The Blazers have not scored fewer than 93 points all year, but they couldn’t find daylight to shoot through against the Lakers.

“We want to take away their confidence as early as possible, because they can get going very quickly,” Davis said. “If they come in to shoot, it’s gonna be a tough shot with a hand in your face.”

Portland anticipated a rally by the Lakers, who fell in Game 1 in their first playoff appearance in seven years. They responded by putting pressure on James, who labored for his 10 points and seven assists, coughing up six turnovers in the process.

But the supporting cast came alive like Davis himself. The Lakers’ shooters partly redeemed themselves for an abysmal Game 1 performance, and no one more than Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, who made 5 for 8 (and 4 for 6 on 3-pointers). He was 0 for 9 in Game 1.

“I shot the ball terribly, I wouldn’t even say ‘bad,’” Caldwell-Pope said. “Just tried to forget about that and not try to carry it to Game 2. Have my mind clear and be ready to play. … I’m a shooter, and shooters shoot.”

Even when the Lakers’ threes weren’t falling, they made up for it by attacking the rim and the glass. The Lakers had 14 offensive rebounds thanks to an emphasis cleaning up the boards, led by Davis (11) and JaVale McGee (8). The Lakers finished with 20 second chance points and outscored the Blazers by 12 in the paint.

Game 3 tips off on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. PDT. And the Lakers expect themselves to carry the same energy into that one.

“We don’t view it as an underdog matchup: They’re a heavyweight with the way they play and with a player like Dame Lillard,” Coach Frank Vogel said. “We’re gonna have to battle the way we did tonight every game of the series.”