When Marcus Camby scored on an alley-oop dunk via a pass from guard Andre Miller Thursday night, the play gave Portland a 24-18 lead with 3:05 remaining and also answered any questions about the center's injured right hand.

During Portland's 101-89 loss in Game 2 Tuesday in Dallas, Camby injured his hand when it got caught in the jersey of a Mavericks player.

Following the game, team medical staff examined it and tried to X-ray it, but Camby adamantly declined the attention and insisted that no matter what he would play in Game 3 on Thursday.

He did. And he was effective. He just couldn't stay on the court for long. Camby picked up two fouls in the third quarter to give him four by the start of the fourth and was limited to 15 minutes to that point. He had contributed four points and five rebounds.

With Camby in foul trouble, rookie Chris Johnson saw his first action of the series and more than held his own on the defensive end.

The rookie from Louisiana State, whom the Blazers signed out of the Development League on March 14, entered with 32 seconds remaining in the third quarter and played 5:36, finishing with two blocks -- including a tone-setting block on Dirk Nowitzki early in the fourth quarter.

"Those were crucial minutes," McMillan said. "As we tell you guys you never know when your opportunity is going to come. He got his tonight and he did really good. He really helped us. "