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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Oden has a good game

Against Jermaine O'Neal and the Raptors, the Blazers' great hope scored 16 points and had 10 rebounds. As I said last night, if he can do this consistently, the doubts about him will disappear.

Meanwhile, toward the end of the game, it became quite apparent that the Blazers don't have a legitimate offensive strategy, other than give the ball to Brandon Roy, get out of the way, and hang around the three-point line for a long shot if he passes it out. That is problematic.

As the Raptors, who have lost six of their last eight, leave town, the world champ Boston Celtics will roll in. They were beaten in L.A. on Christmas and in Oakland last night, and they're playing in Sac'to tomorrow before visiting the Blazers on Tuesday. They're in a rough stretch on their schedule, but they'll be hungry.

Comments (11)

any team that has an all-star player (which Roy is, Kobe is, etc.) will always go to him at the end of the game which actually means they DO have a offensive strategy.

Yeah, we're no offensive mystery to other teams. Of course Roy is going to be the focal point, but the starting 5 always run the high pick and roll, rarely well. At least the bench, with Sergio and Rudy running things, give you a different look each time down the floor.

I think this is why Nate will never take us all the way to the promised land.

I enjoyed tonight especially with the snow melting. If Arctic Blast 2008 had been a detainee interrogation, I would have talked by Day 12: "I'll tell you anything. Just make it stop."
The problem with relying on Roy like this at the end of games is that it could wear him down. I hope the hamstring that he tweaked is okay. As the quarter progressed he took rougher and rougher spills 'til he got dinged.
Sure, you go to the hot hand but basketball always works better when it's a team effort and there will be nights when Brandon is off.
Why not prepare? That being said, Brandon was in the zone. One theory: He had to adjust after the 52 point game to the idea that he really is this good. Watching the interview on ESPN with Wilbon, Brandon wouldn't go near the idea that he's in Dwayne Wade's class, etc.. Refreshing but he could end up with the same sort of rep. I mean he was in the zone INSIDE the zone tonight.
Incidentally, while many Portlanders wonder why this is taking so long, Wilbon's question about the team was did Brandon think it would get this good so quickly? Wilbon's surprised at how fast it's coming together.
My one complaint: I was hoping they'd feed Greg Oden a little more towards the end. He was quite a presence out there and watching him reject O'Neal's shots was hilarious.
I also vote for a new stat: Rebounds that Oden got that nobody else on the Blazers in a similar position on the floor, could have pulled in - I think there were several of those tonight.
Go Blazers. The Celtics game Tuesday is something to look forward to and that's not bad on a winter night in Portland.

More concerning to me is how the home team was getting killed on the pick and roll, just like at the end of the Dallas game. How many times did we end up with Blake on Chris Bosh? (Bosh is scary good, incidentally. And a lefty, just like Barack ) That is a recipe for disaster.

other than give the ball to Brandon Roy

They'll figure it out. Give 'em some time.

We should still get down on our knees every night and thank the Good Lord for giving KP the sense to take Roy. We could easily be talking about giving the ball to Adam Morrison in crunch time.

I agree that they'll come up with more options as they develop. But things will get easier with Brandon in crunch team if teams are at all concerned with anyone else on the floor. Nothing wrong with giving the ball to Aldridge and see if they single cover him.

Anyway, good game from Oden. You want the young fella to stay positive and not get too frustrated. It's a long season.

That's one of the myths of the draft that year. It was not Adam Morrison or Brandon Roy. Morrison went 3rd before we took Roy. It would have been Morrison instead of LaMarcus Aldridge - if the trade with Chicago for the pick had still happened.
Still a cause for prayers of thanks though.
One interesting aspect for Adam Morrison fans - and I was one of them - was a backcourt of Roy from UW and Morrison from Gonzaga. Sort of a Northwest Armada.
In my defense, I thought it would be great if my old band member, who played the National Anthem at Zags games sometimes, could come down to the Rose Garden and also play when Morrison was here. That was part of it. Hey, it's sports. Fans have their reasons.
As long as you're praying about the Blazers turn of events don't forget one to the god of ping-pong balls.


For what little it's worth, kudos for acknowledging Oden's good game.

Jack, I think you're underestimating the Blazers offense a little bit. I agree that it sometimes appears to be nothing more than "give the ball to Brandon and get out of the way." However, I see a lot of high pick and rolls, particularly with Aldridge, as well as baseline and mid-post picks designed to get Outlaw, Blake or Aldridge open for mid-range looks. Plus, the open looks that Brandon creates on drive-and-kick plays are the envy of many teams in the league. Maybe it's not the Princeton offense, but it's effective and I think there's some rhyme and reason to it.

As long as Oden is hustling and keeping his nose clean, I think sportswriters should get off his back. I like the guy, superstar or not. And he gives the Blazers two fair-to-big size bodies in the middle.

I was at the game last night; and really liked the way Greg Oden held his own in that game. Nice to see him with 8 points by the end of the first quarter. I think if he plays like this in the future, we will see his point and rebound totals go way up. It's great to be getting a collection of FREE CHALUPA coupons this year!

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