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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Blazers beat Celtics without Roy

Big character-builder.

Comments (23)

Jack, I think this game answers some of your questions about Nate McMillan. The Blazers just beat the defending champs without Brandon Roy, on a night when they played an abysmal first half and fought an uphill battle against atrociously biased officiating. It seems to me that this kind of performance doesn't happen if the players aren't on board with what the coach is doing.

What little I saw (after the bowl game) was good. Obviously, the give-it-to-Brandon-and-stand-around problem was avoided.

I never said they weren't "on board with what the coach is doing." What I said was that the coach wasn't doing enough. Jump shots aren't going to get them to the second round of the playoffs.

"Jump shots aren't going to get them to the second round of the playoffs."

That's more than a fair point, as once again we depended heavily on the outside shooting of one of our guards (this time Blake instead of Roy) to get us through the rough patches. But on that note, did you see any of the highlights of Oden pushing people around in the post tonight? Golly. A few times he simply overpowered whoever was in front of him. What's scary is that in addition to the power game, he displayed a soft touch on a few of his scores, a nice mix of baby hooks and McHale-esque lean-in layups.

Nice effort from Oden and Blake (and TO off the bench).

Blake was on fire and Oden had a great game. Plus, Aldridge and Outlaw were great too. Our defense was beautiful.

We just beat the second best team in the league without our best player. We have a good team.

If they can get decent "points in the paint," the Blazers will be formidable.

BTW, Dwight is on with Jerome Kersey and Pasero on Comcast 37 right now. Geezerific.

Brandon Roy should go back and study Kevin Johnson from the old Suns team. He had a lightning move to the hoop and then would often do a non-flashy lay-up. He also had a smooth jump-shot and I distinctly remember one series when the mighty Lakers could not guard him. Time after time he relied on his athletic ability. Then way before his time he began developing hamstring problems. I hope it doesn't happen to Brandon. Team basketball in the 4th quarter is still the best way to keep everyone healthy and into it. With all that talent out there, it's still about doing things as efficiently as possible for long careers.
Loved Rudy's steal that he caught himself while sitting down. Amazing. Great to see Oden smiling.
Go Blazers.

You are right, Bill, about the smile. Nothing great can happen until Oden's comfortable in his own skin.

That could be a memorable moment: The Blazers put 6 men on the floor and score. The refs can't take it back so they call a tech but the play stands. Oden goes over and watches the replay and then it happens. He smiles.
Go Blazers.

I did see that part. Too funny.

If anyone doubts the offensive coaching juggernaut that is Nate MacMillan, behold the glory of the 6-on-5 offense. 7 Seconds or Less, eat your heart out.

Very fun game.

I'd credit half the victory to Celtic lackadaisical defense. they're tired, tired, tired at the end of this road trip. the Blazers got very, very lucky. a couple of missteps and the Celtics had it.

best part: Blazers got to experience a tough game without Roy. that's a good lesson.

Great sports night in our fair town...

Except that the Ducks won...

Great Holiday Bowl game... you watched and couldn't bring yourself to root for the Ducks? Aw...

Now *that* was a good Oden game, and not just statwise. He owned the paint for big stretches of time that game, and stayed out of foul trouble until the end. Not bad against a physical Celts team.

I find it very interesting that Westside Guy called a Blazer win by 5 on this very blog 2 days ago.

May he do so prior to all tough games!

Just had a feeling...usually I open my mouth on stuff like this and I look like a fool! Good to get one right.

I was very impressed how that Blazers kept fighting and it was really a whole team effort. I also don't think the Celtics were tired, they came into Portland Sunday night and practiced Monday here...I just think they got outplayed.

Garnett's act is getting old, he needs to shut his trap and play some ball...just not against the Blazers!

Rumor has it that Roy's leg is actually fine, it's just that Nate won't let him play till he fixes his hair.


Where are all the Oden haters this morning?

One item that shouldn't be overlooked from last night's game was Outlaw's clutch shooting - he dropped in a couple of key shots when the Celts built a little lead and nobody else could hit. He kept the Celts from breaking the game wide open.

And Oden's performance, while not perfect, confirmed that he's got the goods to play in this league and play very well, given some time.

Just ask yourself how many championships were won without a good center? Okay, Michael Jordan won with Ben Cartwright, Stacey King and Will Purdue but he's the exception. You have to have someone big and mobile who can bang under the boards and Oden is the guy.
Did Magic ever win without Kareem? Did Kobe win last year with Andrew Bynum out?
Did Larry Bird ever win without Robert Parish? The disaster of taking Sam Bowie was actually the coin flip that cost us Hakeem as the #1 pick. Could you imagine a young Drexler and Hakeem recreating Phi Slamma Jamma in Memorial Coliseum? I doubt Michael Jordan would have as many rings as he does. Thankfully Drexler got his ring after he left town.
There are plenty of slow 7-footers out there but the truly athletic ones like Oden are as rare as it gets in the draft. No matter what happens, taking Oden over Kevin Durant was a no-brainer.

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