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Monday, April 23, 2007

More alumni

The second day of the pro hoops playoffs was interesting, if you follow that sport. The Golden State Warriors, whom we saw whip the Blazer B-team on Thursday night, came out and outplayed the top-ranked Dallas Mavericks. Perhaps a little less surprisingly, the Denver Nuggets defeated the favored San Antonio Spurs; the Spurs have a much better record, but always seem to dig themselves a hole to start the post-season.

As we did on Saturday, we kept an eye out for ex-Blazers who are still playing. We found a few.

Antonio Daniels is on the Washington Wizards, who took their lumps against the Cleveland Cavaliers, led by LeBron James. Daniels played most of the game, since Wiz star Gilbert Arenas, whom he backs up, is gone for the season with an injury. Daniels had 9 points, 11 assists, and 7 rebounds in the losing effort. He's been on a half dozen different teams, coming off the bench for the Blazers in 2002-03.

Steve Blake (left), something of a fan favorite on last year's awful Blazer squad, was traded to Milwaukee and later this season landed a spot starting at point guard for Denver. His job now is to get the ball to Allen Iverson (31 points yesterday) or Carmelo Anthony (30 points yesterday) and get out of the way. Blake had 7 points, 4 assists and 2 steals yesterday for George Karl's Nuggets.

On the Laker bench, we find Aaron McKie, who looked like a pretty promising prospect when he played for Portland back from 1994 to 1997. (The Blazers traded him, Randolph Childress, and Reggie Jordan to Detroit in exchange for Stacey Augmon.) McKie hardly ever gets into the game for the Lakers; his last appearance was March 11, when the Lakers lost their sixth straight. When you're a shooting guard on the Los Angeles Kobe, you sit out a lot.

So there you have it -- I count seven ex-Blazers who are not yet on summer vacation, four of whom (Wallace, Dixon, Daniels, and Blake) are getting some actual playing time in the playoffs. After all that basketball, though, I'm a little punchy. Readers, please let me know if I've left anyone out.

Comments (1)

I think it was Mike Rice who last week said something to the effect that "if I'm a playoff team, I do NOT want to be playing the Golden State Warriers." At the very least, they're the most exciting team to watch. And who knew about Baron Davis! Dallas is in trouble. Time for more closeups of Mark Cuban losing it.

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