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Monday, February 22, 2010

Andre loves his shots, cont'd

The Blazers blew a 25-point lead in the third quarter and lost in overtime to the Utah Jazz last night. The Blazers' interior defense has improved somewhat with the arrival of Marcus Camby, but the rest of the team seems to be doing less, not more, on defense than before he got here. That being said, it would all have been forgiven if the offense had held up; instead, Portland scored 10 points in the fourth quarter. I think they made two field goals in that whole period.

Brandon Roy's playing through pain, doesn't look like he really wants to be out there, may be pouting over the Blake and Outlaw trades, and for whatever reasons failed to provide his regular one-man show at the end. He also missed some key foul shots late in the game.

Martell Webster has disappeared. He isn't playing much, and he isn't producing. Last night he had 2 points in 14 minutes on the floor. He scored only 4 against Boston on Friday. Joining him in mediocrity last night, Rudy Fernandez shot 4 of 11 in 29 minutes.

Andre Miller, who can score 50 points in a game when he gets hot, tried to pick up the slack by firing up his knuckleball jump shots, but they didn't fall in the hoop. He wound up shooting 5 for 18. I guess that when there's no other option available, Miller has to chuck up his line drives. But that's where the problem lies. Why the Blazers' young players aren't moving furiously without the ball and executing well crafted plays is an unhappy mystery. Maybe Dre and Coach Nate need to bury the hatchet and add a few pages to the playbook, and quickly. Especially something for Batum, who was a bright spot against the Jazz. Otherwise, Portland's about to roll off the cliff and out of playoff contention.

The Blazers have a road trip now against some of the dogs of the Eastern Conference, and so they will post a few wins. But when they get back out west and have to face serious competition in a tight race for post-season berths, they're going to have a really hard time.

Comments (11)

In Roy's absence the TEAM showed occasional energy and excitement. That's gone.

Joni Mitchell on Steve Blake: "Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone?"

Meanwhile Dallas has upgraded big with a trade. Dallas is quite beastly now.
Cleveland upgraded too.
Marcus Camby is great but we're just trying to make up for injuries, so we lose a lot in the deal too.
Portland's outside shooting falls on Martell and his attitude is fragile. Blake won a college championship with Maryland and we're going to miss that winning edge.
I have to believe Steve scores a field goal in the 4th last night.

Post that Nate poll again, I want to change my vote. I gave him an 8 last time. I want to change it to a 3.

Someone should explain moving without the ball as opposed to staring at Brandon to the rest of the team.

The Blazers didn't need to bring anybody new in after last season. Remember, they made it to the playoffs. They've traded away several scorers for...Brickmaster Miller, Octagenarian Howard, And 2-point Camby.

I'm with Bill. Blake was missed last night, especially when Roy took the point. No one on the wing to hit a jump shot.

Does anyone on this team, coaches as well as players know what "cutting to the basket without the ball" means? Look at Utah, they know. And they really don't have any more athletic abilities than Portland. I have to admit, the Blazers play better without Roy, but that could be a psycho problem as well as coaching. It's a team game, not a Roy game.

I was at the game last night, and the coaching baffles me. LA started as hot as I've seen him - silky smooth shots, that little fall away jump shot that's almost impossible to block. Batum was on fire in the first half - defense and 14 points. Both were off the court much of the second half, and instead of putting in Martell in the last few seconds (after only playing five or six minutes at the start of the third quarter), why not Batum? He never scored again, but was hardly in the game.

Many of Miller's shots were with the shot clock down to a few seconds - at times, too much over-passing. The Blazers had two end-of-quarter shots just after the buzzer - either would have made a difference in the game.

Also, Martell played very little - 7 minutes in the first quarter, I think a bit less in the third quarter - wonder if he is hurt or ill?

While Canby is not a scorer - several times he couldn't grab the rebound, but with those long arms was able to knock it out to a Blazer on the perimeter - for once, the Blazers had more offensive rebounds than the opponent.

I agree with the comment above - Brandon gets the ball and everyone else stands and watches - not unlike the Drexler days.

Also wonder if there are some things going on behind closed doors - that was a game that absolutely should not have been lost.

Why on earth is Rudy Fernandez out there at crunch time? Last year's model, maybe. He's been worse than worthless most of the season and playing him puts Batum/Webster on the bench.

Blake wasn't good at all. I won't miss him. He couldn't even penetrate a defense on a drive. Andre can, and he gets to the line.

While Andre's not as good of a shooter as him, he's a way better pure scorer.

Blake simply sat in the corner and took a few threes. Roy was the one who usually took the ball up, anyways, when they both were in.

Blazers are just fine. I think they'll make a huge run and make the playoffs. They're not going to tank, and they're playing with new players of late...Roy and Camby. It's difficult to get into a rhythm under those circumstances.

Umpire:"Both were off the court much of the second half, and instead of putting in Martell in the last few seconds (after only playing five or six minutes at the start of the third quarter), why not Batum? He never scored again, but was hardly in the game."

ws:Aldridge was in foul trouble...in fact I think he fouled out. Of course his time in the 2nd half is going to diminish.

Webster came in because he's a huge 3 point shooter. He's just a streaky player, that's all.

The only thing I agree with is Batum needed more time in the game in the 2nd half.

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