Jan 09

Miami At Its Best in Win

By mikebarrett
It would probably be going overboard to suggest that the Miami Heat can't play any better, but even they admitted, after their overtime win in Portland, that performance was pretty tough to beat.

It wasn't perfect, but it was in the same area code, as they shot 57 percent, hit 7 of their final 8 shots in regulation, hit 5 of their 7 shots in overtime, got 44 from LeBron James, 34 from Dwyane Wade, and beat the Trail Blazers 107-100.  

The Trail Blazers should be able to take something out of the fact that they were far from perfect, shooting just 42 percent, but were still in a position to win the game in regulation.  They won't take any satisfaction out of that, because they feel they're beyond that, but it does show us how far this team has come.

Portland did play a very good second half, and held an eight-point lead with eight minutes left.  Their lead was still seven with just 1:42 left in the game.  But, Miami, behind LeBron, ended regulation on a 9-2 run, and once it got to overtime a Heat win seemed inevitable.  

You may not like LeBron (and that club is already full of members), but he indeed looked like the greatest player in the world on this night.  He didn't seem interested in the first half, as he had just 12 points on 5 of 11 shooting.  But, you knew it was a matter of time before he got interested and decided to take over.  He was simply unstoppable in the final minutes.  He ended up scoring 32 points in the second half and overtime, and taunted the Rose Garden crowd after his dagger three pointer late in OT.

That's the difficult thing about the Big 3.  You can't stop, or even slow, them all.  Chris Bosh was badly outplayed by LaMarcus Aldridge, but it wasn't enough.  Wade dominated early, with 15 points in the first quarter, and handed the baton to James in the second half.  When you catch this team on this kind of a night, when they shoot 10 for 13 in the fourth quarter, and 5 for 7 in overtime, you're not going to beat them.

Despite all of this, amazingly, Portland was still one possession away from walking away with a win.  They had a final look, with the game tied at 93, and time running out in the fourth.  Miami's defense took Portland out of what it initially wanted to do, and Andre Miller ended up with a makeable outside shot.  It missed, and came right back to him.  He hurried a final shot, from the foul line, at the rim and it missed as well.  Overtime was on, and LeBron took over. 

The loss spoiled another all-star type performance from LaMarcus Aldridge, who was brilliant.  Bosh, who knows Aldridge's moves better than just about anyone being they work out together in Dallas in the offseason, was unable to come up with stops.  Aldridge ended with 31 points, 14 rebounds, 7 assists, 2 steals, and a blocked shot. 

Nicolas Batum was very solid as well, scoring 22 points on 9 of 16 shooting.  But, (and here's what killed Portland) the rest of the team was just 17 for 52 (33%).  The effort was there from the rest of the Blazers, but even with Aldridge and Batum's shooting factored in, Portland shot just 42 percent in the game.  Again, it's amazing, but that was still almost enough to get the job done.

To listen to Nate McMillan's post-game comments, click here.

One streak continued, and one was snapped on this night.  The Heat have now won 13 in a row on the road.  They are chasing the NBA record for consecutive road wins.  The '71-'72 Lakers won 16 in a row on the road.  The Trail Blazers had won 8 in a row at home.

Things don't get much easier for the Trail Blazers on Tuesday night, as they host the New York Knicks at the Rose Garden.  Portland won the first meeting, in New York City (a win that's looking more impressive with each passing day).  They'll go for the sweep on Tuesday night.  Most likely, it'll take more than 42 percent shooting to get that job done in that game as well.



  1. You can hate LeBron all you want, but you got to blame yourselves, Rose Garden crowd, for letting him do that to you. He feeds off boos. It's everywhere in the media that he feeds off boos, and you boo'd him. I respect LeBron a lot, and this win I hope proves to Blazer fans that LeBron is far superior than Kobe is, was, or ever will be. The only thing that separates the two is championships, and I can guarantee you that will change.

    I've watched a lot of basketball in my career, but the Blazers played a solid game (for the most part) and went to the man who was hot, and he mad baskets (LaMarcus). In fact, I'm sure the "double dribble" from LeBron will be brought up. If that was called, the Blazers would have likely won, as LeBron scored on the other end and was fouled (but missed the FT). It amazes me how refs called an even game but missed one crucial call that missed the game for us.

    The one thing that really concerns me is the 3 goggles. I HATE the 3 goggles. They're annoying, teams take it as a mock, and it makes our players throw up stupid shots to be able to do that. Honestly Patty, stop doing that. The Blazers could have ran away multiple times with this game and got 10 pt leads but they settled for stupid shots constantly, and that has happened too many times this season. It's starting to get really annoying.

    Another problem I have is why did Andre take the last second shot? Not that he's not a clutch player, it's just that Nate McMillan had him on the bench for 9 minutes and decided to put him in for the final possession and be the go to guy. He did that last time against Houston as well, and Andre missed a free throw. If it was me, I'd have made a play for LMA. Even if it was expected, LMA could have gotten it done.

    This was also another game where we badly missed Brandon Roy.

    But hey, you take the loss and you play hard against the Knicks. You should be proud you scared Miami and survived against 57% shooting from the best duo the NBA has seen. Blazers should be proud. Just next time don't taunt LeBron, or he'll have the last laugh. He always does.

    by Herr on 1/9/2011 11:09 PM
  2. Taunting is --or should be-- beneath "the greatest player in the world," especially when he faced such valiant competition.

    I wasn't a member of the anti-LBJ club --until tonight. Now emphatically NOT a fan of Ms. Snifflepants.

    by occassia on 1/9/2011 11:15 PM
  3. Every player in the game that has been considered one of the best is a taunter. Kobe, Shaq, even MJ have done it. It's part of the game. It only hurts if you let it hurt you.

    by Herr on 1/9/2011 11:44 PM
  4. Herr
    Respectivaly i disagree with you. I hate kobe but lebron has not serpassed him as of yet. Kobe has done what lebron did tonight alot in his career. It is hard for me to say that because i really do not like kobe. But Lebron is right there with him. I however do not respect him. And i cant yet put him in the same stature as MJ. He is no MJ. If the game was played the way it was when MJ was still playing lebron would not put up these numbers. The league was tougher back then. The players were tougher. And honestly if some one mocked you back then you would be put on your rear end.
    Now this is not to take away the fact that lebron is one of the best players to ever play the game. What he did tonight was amazing. But Mocking the fans is not right. As for the 3 goggels the balzers do not do that to mock other teams, I agree i think it is cheasy but they dont egg fans on with it I.E. JR smith. They do it because they are close nit group of young guys. Like it our love it it is like haveing a special hand shake with your closest friends.
    Now as for the blazers i missed Broy tonight. I like wes alot but he is not Broy. Yes i think lamarcus is a better player with out him. But i think if Broy came back and could adjust to what lamarcus has become. You will see a much more improved team. Lamarcus killing inside getting doubled tossing to broy for a jump shot or lay up I can see it.
    Any way great game tonight guys Nico keep it up Lamarcus for allstar.

    by Avgjoe28 on 1/10/2011 12:15 AM
  5. I hope the Blazers get a really good winning streak going the rest of the month, when the schedule is finally stacked our way. Maybe a streak will give us the confidence to think we should win every time we take the court. It feels right now like some people are just a little too happy that we played Miami so close, instead of frustrated that we let the game get away. We obviously win the game if we shoot threes even as unremarkably as Miami did (three more makes would have given us 33% and the win) or if Wade and LeBron were just a tad less locked in on their jumpers, or if we had avoided a half-dozen really clumsy possessions. I screamed at the TV images of Wesley and Andre a couple of times each, and at Rudy (for that awful play picking up his dribble and throwing the pass away for an easy break the other way) and even at the telecast director (for giving us the replay of Patty's inconsequential foul and making us miss Batum's fatal one that followed). But this team is coming together nicely, and if Wesley can just stop pressing on offense and everyone else stays healthy and at the expected level, I can see us running the table from now until we play Boston at the end of the month. Then comes a very interesting February, which will tell us what we've got, with 5 of 6 road games against losing clubs, and all six home games against teams with winning records. The hope is that we can slice up all the weaklings on the road and start beating the good teams at home. If we can go 8-1 the rest of this month, and go 9-3 in February, I think we'll be right there among the leaders in our Division. We've lost too many games by now to expect to finish close to San Antonia, Dallas, or LA, but if these guys keep playing the way they've shown they can, a four-seed still seems possible. As for LeBron, I just don't see how it helps your image as the best in the game when fans who would otherwise be ready to shake their heads and acknowledge the great play that won the game, instead see your posturing and think "Wow! He really is an A-hole."

    by Islander on 1/10/2011 12:25 AM
  6. I'm not saying LeBron is an MJ. No one is even close to MJ. The thing about LeBron is that he single handledly took the Cavs to the Finals. Kobe could never do that. It's all opinion, but I think it's safe to say LBJ has surpassed Kobe and started a whole new era of basketball. Yes, mocking the fans isn't the best thing to do, but for some of the crap they (not exactly portland fans) give LBJ, I can understand it. Why he chose to do it to Portland fans is beyond me, especially since there really is nothing between Portland fans and LeBron, but to each its own.

    As for the goggles... how many people took LeBron's team dancing as offensive, even though they were just dancing with each other meaning no harm? Obviously it got to JR Smith, which led to him being a moron. All I can say is I wouldn't like it if someone did that after making a 3 if I was playing basketball, and I'm sure I'm not the only one that feels that way. And ever since it's "release", I've seen a lot more stupid 3 pointers by the Blazers. I'd prefer it if we ended it before it gets out of hand, but that's just me.

    by Herr on 1/10/2011 12:31 AM
  7. I agree with Herr on most accounts. Ive either played basketball or watched basketball going on 22 years now. I knew this was going to be very tough one for the Blazers to win. They played very good basketball for most of this game.

    Lets start with King James, I dont like him plain and simple. I do however think hes pure amazing on how good he plays this game. No one in the league can stop him, and thats that. And while yes, some of the greats of this game have done some form of "taunting"...Lebron takes the cake. After he returned to Cleveland and beat the Cavs, he said that he "wants to continue his "greatness" in Miami." haha..EGO trip..or that the league is watered down, so he some teams should go bye bye.

    Ever since high school hes been told how good he is over and over...he was a icon in Cleveland making Millions at such young age, I mean he calls Mr. Stern Hey David whats up?...Not that I like Mr. Stern, I think hes a horrible comissionar. But bottom line is James head is wayy to big, and if you dont think so, your just not a very paying much attention. But that man can play basketball, and thats the fact and he beat us tonight...Not Miami..But Lebron...with some help from Wade in first half.

    I will say that for most part the refs did pretty good,they miss the double dribble call, so that was king huge. But ive seen worse. So often you see the superstarts get so many bogus calls. This is the worse profesional league out there where the star treatment is pathetic. If it was not for the Blazers I would not even watch the nba.

    It sucks we couldnt get more offense going in the ot period as well as make stops, but you move on and play the next game. Go Blazers!

    by whitefeather21380 on 1/10/2011 1:04 AM
  8. Oh and yeah the 3 goggles gotta go. Im not a fan either...just play basketball fellas, let your game do all the talking for ya.

    by whitefeather21380 on 1/10/2011 1:07 AM
  9. The three goggles is kind of annoying and cheesy but I love the meaning behind it, it's certainly not offensive towards others and they do it to show how close they are which is really cool. I love the comeraderie and how they support each other.

    It's certainly not making them play worse, we have been playing very well of late. I think the only one who's taking a few bad shots is Wesley, and that's not because of the three goggles, but I think his recent success is getting to his head a little bit and he's starting to force stuff which isn't what's needed.

    by Becker24 on 1/10/2011 1:14 AM
  10. Man, I know that's nothing like that but: great loss.

    I tought we'd never have any realistic chance to get past Heat (since they're on a mega hot streak and so), and the Blazers were the best team on court for like 42 minutes.

    To think that 1 little point that night could save us, it's so sad... but stil, as I said, "great loss".

    Seeing the charts here, just one stats comes to my mind, and makes me rephrase your beloved Kassandra:

    I love the hustle by Wes, but I can't praise someone who hit 6-20, and 2-10 from 3pt. Too many shots... I dunno how many of them were wild shots, or good shots, but he's not getting it done, anyway... and I hope this chances soon coz we can't have 14 shots wasted :)

    Still, I hope this game (even if it's a loss) helps us to grow even more and beat other good teams.

    Cheers from Brazil

    GO BLAZERS \o/

    by Tiago Torigoe on 1/10/2011 2:50 AM
  11. I am a proud fan. LMA is starting to put up some very Pau Gasol-like numbers. His passing, though sometimes over looked, has improved as well.

    I've been thinking the last couple days "how can this team improve?"

    Consistency is an area that comes to my mind.

    Andre is pretty consistent but his numbers have fallen just a bit lately. You can pretty much count on him to give you 10 pts and 8 assists a night. Camby is consistent. You can count on him to get at least 13 Rebs a night. LMA is consistent THIS YEAR. You can count on him to give you 25 and 10 each night. Patty is consistent. He's good for about 10 pts and 4 assists.

    Now, with wes and Nic, you can count on them to play defense and give effort and energy. But you really don't know what kind of numbers they'll be giving you each night. If they can improve their offensive repertoire over the summer; do some fine tuning, it will make a significant difference in the W-L column. I also think that Nic should put on a few pounds over the summer, similar to what LMA did. Not only will it help with his physicality, but i also think it will improve his mentality. It sounds stupid, but i think it wasnt really in LMAs nature to be a beast. But when he became a beast physically over the summer, he in turn became a beast in his mind. Testosterone levels.

    I never know what to expect from Rudy. Dante gives consistent effort, but if he could start avg-ing about 8 pts a night, that would be huge. Our backup centers seem like they're just place holders, but i'm counting on G.O. to change all that. Overall, bench production needs a lot of work, but has improved now that patty kinda has a role in the rotation.

    sometimes i watch other teams and they just have a few guys that always do their part off the bench and i wish we had more guys like that. Jared Dudley, JJ reddick, Barbosa, glen davis, etc.

    consistency is the name of the game, but i do like the fact that most of our young players get better and better each year. I just wish some would get better faster.

    by formalityjoey on 1/10/2011 5:59 AM
  12. Mike:

    I like Patty's post game remarks the best. We had a chance to win the game against the best, and we can take this loss as proof that we can compete with the best. Learn from it and improve upon it and move to the next game.

    Any game that is played that hard is painful to lose. In fact, it would be just as painful for Miami to have lost. Maybe in a game like this there should be no losers as indicated by a tie at the end of regulation. Over time is a whole new 5 minute game and Miami was the winner of that game not the winner of the first game.

    I am not trying to blow my horn, but I have said many, many times if the Blazers go out play with intensity execute their offense and play good defense that they can compete with anybody; that was proven tonight, we can hold our head up high and be proud of a gallant effort. I know a win is the ultimate goal and we should have had it, but we are young yet and have not complete control of our emotions. But we are getting there plenty fast and although I don't make predictions, I have a vision of our Blazers showing the NBA that we can stand up and be counted.

    It was a great game; it was an exciting game, and somewhat surprising to the fact that we held our own against the best. If we had got Matthews on his high game instead of his low game the results could have been fantastic. I am still encouraged by his game and hope his streakiness will get better. Batman came through great on LBJ, but we need both Wesley and Batum to play good, not either or, every game to be the consistent team we know we can be. I love Patty's game; he will continue to improve with Wesley and Batum, and then watch out.


    by Hg on 1/10/2011 6:08 AM
  13. Oh! The debate on the three goggles, it is just a symbol of enjoyment not taunting. No different then running down the floor with your hand held up in a shot finishing position.

    On the debate of King James, you can say he is among the best that ever played the game, mostly because of his size, plus his athletic ability. Many players have the speed and the talent and even more BBIQ than James just not the body to go with it. Being among the best in the world doesn't necessarily make him likable. He thinks we hate him because he is great, I dislike his paranoia attitude (visions of splendor), but I guess it is not his fault as that is a sign of emotional immaturity or illness. So, I can say, I wished he would just grow up and be a decent human. All great players weren’t bad manner people, but it seems to be the trend of the new ones.


    by Hg on 1/10/2011 6:22 AM
  14. Well, you're all going to hate me but I listen to Kobe fans trash talk and say things about LBJ that just aren't true. Over the years of listening to that, I gained respect for the man. He's immature, yes, and pretty stupid (I said the key to this game was not letting LBJ take over, and that was his choice, no one elses, sadly he did), but when you constantly hear some of the stupidest excuses to hate a guy, you start to want to watch him, and thus, I've enjoyed LBJ's game a lot. The taunting I can live with, after all, even though he is the "professional", some of the things people say to him is far worse than something LBJ would EVER say. You can hate him, love him, or not care. I just to love his game, and if the Blazers don't win, I hope he does win, so that finally people can stop bashing him for not having a ring (yet, how many players in this league do have a ring? like 5%?).

    I'd also like to make it 100% clear that I know the goggles aren't a form of taunt from the Blazers. My concern is that other players will think it's a taunt. As I said, I wouldn't like it if someone scored a 3 pointer on me and started doing the goggles.

    by Herr on 1/10/2011 8:29 AM
  15. Herr
    I dont want you to think we are trying to make you think the 3 goggles are ok. Not that you do.. it just gives us something to talk about diffrent minds you know. It is fun to debate these things. I like to see diffrent point of view, and i agree with both sides. I do not like the 3 goggles but is because i think they are stupid. But I like that the guys have there own little thing they do.

    As for lebron I guess my biggest beaf with him is he is a romodle. You know as many people that dont like him th kids out there still love him. As adults we look at the stuff he does and we are like why would you do something so immature. As kids we look at it like haha look at what he is doing oh they got punked. I know he taunts to kinda say hey look at me i dont need you to like me to be great. But i just wish he would keep in mind the message he sends when he is doing it. The kids may take that to school with them just a thought.

    by Avgjoe28 on 1/10/2011 8:56 AM
  16. Herr, have at it man. Watch Lebron..root for him, Nba fans all have their opinions.

    Im not going to get into the kobe fans vs Lebron fans and who said who, cause no one is peerfect in this league, everyone trash talks alittle, things are said, no one is innocent.

    But Lebron is even below all of that. The way he left Cleveland was not right. The way he struts around the league. There are so many negatives about this guy as a person from what I can see. Very immature, selfish. Hes not a romodel, Hes a a rich egotistical kid from Ohio. Ive alway held Lebron in a neutral light up and ill this season. First he leaves the city that LOVED him!!!..I mean they worshiped him, and the cavs would have been champions if given just a little more time. Michael Jordan Waited..Kobe Waited..yada yada..winning takes time. So when he sign with Miami I was like hmmmm not cool..but alright,mans gonna do what he wants to do.

    But the way he left Cleveland left bad taste in my mouth. Then when he Plays the Cavs, he spends 90% of the game trashing it up at Cavs bench. Some of that is their fault, seems like they didnt like what he was saying from comments after the game, but they allowed to happen. In the older days I watching-Drexler era, a player would get popped in the mouth for that crap...Then his comments afterwards about his greatness and things he will do for Miami, the man is ful of himself.

    shrinking the league, so everyteam can have multiple stars like in Miami..yeah sure..lets get rid of about 10 teams atleast, so everyteam has 2-3 bonafide all stars, then it wont look so BAD that Miami did what they did.

    I dont join the hate wagon by reading everything i see or hearing what the media says, or what the general fanbase talks about, I watch a mans ACTIONS..I watch how he conducts himself and resprensents himself..and Im not impressed at all. I think hes still a boy in a man body who can play the game of basketball better than anyone in the league, so yes hes an amazing basketball player, and he lives on booing fans to increase his performances. So it is what it is..I credit him for the amazing talent he is on the court, but thats it.

    by whitefeather21380 on 1/10/2011 9:23 AM
  17. Herr: I wasn't hating on you or disagreeing with you, I was just giving my opinion on the 3 goggles. I don't think it is that big of a deal and it is the media that making something big out of it.

    As far as other players taking it as taunting, that is not our fault either.

    Either way it is not our call to make. If they think it is great and gives them camaraderie, You think it is bad and I think it is OK, we are all just expressing our opinions, but the bottom line it is our players choice to make.

    On James, I just don't like his attitude, that does not mean he is not a great BB player.If he thinks he has to be a rotten sportsmen to be a great player than that is his call, but for me I don't like it. It is just my opinion and feelings, not something you can take to the bank


    by Hg on 1/10/2011 9:35 AM
  18. media is trying to get millers undies in a bunch again with patty taking his min. its on oregon live if u want to check it out

    by Avgjoe28 on 1/10/2011 9:56 AM
  19. Lebron may be one of the best in the league, but the more I see him,ithink he is a classless jerkwad.JOMO
    We played about as good as we could play last night.Miami D'd up hard in the last few minutes,And LBJ is impossible to stop,as is D Wade.I find it interesting that with those two finishing,that they have a losing record in close games.
    LaManchild was just as unstoppable as any of the big 3.C Bosh did NOT have an answer for him last night.He is playing at a level that I never expected.
    Patty has become a clutch performer faster than I expected.Kudos to him for his leadership for a young player.
    The guy who I feel bad for is THE ARMONIZER.REMEMBER him.He has been relegated to the bench and disappeared from sight.Wow ,has he fallen from grace.
    As much as I love Wesley Money,he does have a tendency to force things.However,I would rather have him being aggressive and missing than passive.
    Cmon,with the 3 goggs, gang.I love anything that makes teams unique.As I have said before here,"Don't be a style crusher UMMMKAY"

    by DowntownVinnie on 1/10/2011 9:57 AM
  20. Seems like bloggers were just praising the blazers for their "killer instinct", or maybe I misread it. Let's see, you've got a seven point lead with 1:42 left. You then proceed to throw the ball into the hands of the other team, which amounts to an uncontested layup, your defense goes into a state of amnesia, and the game is tied in 90 seconds. You launch brick after brick and even allow the game to get to OT. Lest you think this was an isolated incident think Dallas and Golden State. This team folds more than an accordian and they've got the 4th quarter record to back it up. That's not killer instinct my friends. As for the comment that this loss would have hurt Miami as much as Portland, sorry HG but the team that comes back from a seven point deficit when the game appeared to be over could be very happy for the win they stole and then forget, but the team that "blows it" will suffer a hangover from this type of stinging defeat indefinately. (Anybody see the Boise State football game loss to Nevada?) Miami's had their day in the sun but we're the ones that get the sunburn. Somebody pass the aloe vera.

    by Phi Slamma on 1/10/2011 10:35 AM
  21. Oh, and I concur, the three-goggles needs to be shown the exit. It's a gesture of cockiness, nothing more. There's scarcely a player in the nba that can't hit a three pointer. Why I remember Tim Duncan hitting his first ever three pointer, and it so happen to be against the blazers in a playoff game. With it the Spurs won at the buzzer. If ever there was a time to display a gesture of arrogance on Duncan's part this was surely it, but he handled it with class. That's what I remember most.

    by Phi Slamma on 1/10/2011 10:52 AM
  22. My idols in the NBA and the players I consider the best player that have played the game are Bird, Magic,Russell,Chamberlain, Baylor and West. These guys were not only the best players on the court, but they also respected the game and the fans that watched the games. James has no respect for the game and is a d**k~!~!~!. I have zero respect for the guy and I have no interest in watching him play the game. The Blazers played a great game and should have won this game. They didn't back down at all and took it to them. I think this game shows that we can play with the big boys and with a trade for a big backup PF, we can make some noise in the playoffs~!~!

    by Gavinfan on 1/10/2011 10:52 AM
  23. Lebron played his usual game. Assists in the first half, more scoring in second half to show off his talent. He is a talented player no one can deny that, but he has no class whatsoever. After seeing his jestures to the crowd at the end of the game, I have no use for him.
    Blazers are playing at a higher level than the start of the season. LA is getting better each game he plays. Patty is a spark that I think we needed and just at the right time. I am beginning to wonder what role if any B Roy will play on the team. Not sure if we need him.

    by Methuselah on 1/10/2011 10:54 AM
  24. Lebron played his usual game. Assists in the first half, more scoring in second half to show off his talent. He is a talented player no one can deny that, but he has no class whatsoever. After seeing his jestures to the crowd at the end of the game, I have no use for him.
    Blazers are playing at a higher level than the start of the season. LA is getting better each game he plays. Patty is a spark that I think we needed and just at the right time. I am beginning to wonder what role if any B Roy will play on the team. Not sure if we need him.

    by Methuselah on 1/10/2011 11:11 AM
  25. Phi Slamma:

    I was just referring to the fact that both teams played a great game and both teams would usually be the winners. Or, to bad there has t be a loser in a game like this.

    I do agree with you on the last few minutes let down by the Blazers; it appears to me that they slow down and try not to lose whether then keep trying to win. I am sure the Blazers will feel the effect of another one slipping away and Miami will dance their way to the plane with the we stole one this time mentallity.

    I feel that we can take these losses and learn by them and become better in the future.


    by Hg on 1/10/2011 11:36 AM
  26. I sure hope you're right HG.

    by Phi Slamma on 1/10/2011 11:39 AM
  27. Props to the Blazers for a great game - and on played with grace and class...unlike LeBron, who gave himself props, at the end of the game. Miami's OT game was sensational and I almost gave it to them, for being a good team, until LeBron took any and all good feelings towards the Heat, away. What a jerk!

    by kaemicha on 1/10/2011 11:41 AM
  28. Since for some reason this discussion has become about LeBron and Three-goggles, I might as well weigh in on the latter. I think the goggles are a cute inside joke, one that's fun when things are going well, but is now getting a bit old. What worries me is that it all began with Patty teasing Rudy on how nearsighted he is, making the comment that he must put on special goggles to make his threes. But Rudy's three-point percentage has been terrible this year; this isn't the first game we've lost that we would have won if he had hit at his former rate. It seems to me that he really may need correction to his vision. I'm guessing that Rudy wouldn't want to mess up his looks with real goggles, which makes me worry that the best we can look forward to is some lazer-corection in the off-season. But by then we'll have lost a lot of sorely-needed three-pointers for lack of some real goggles.

    by Islander on 1/10/2011 11:59 AM
  29. I really expected the Heat to run away in this game, but thankfully the Blazers held strong through 48 minutes. I was disappointed of the last seconds of regulation where Dre ended up being the option, whether it was drawn up that way (doubtful) or the inability for a better look. I would have preferred for Patty to remain in the game, then at least you would have had a better mid-range to long shot option should you have needed it. But overall, even though we lost, I still feel like we won.

    To be that close in a game where Lebron scores over 40 and Wade over 30 is pretty remarkable. LMA definitely outplayed Bosh and Batum had a very strong showing against LeBron, both very positive things to take away from this game.

    A few things I've noticed lately. I think Patty is doing a better job and is slowly chipping away Dre's minutes. I'm excited about this. Although I believe Dre is a better Facilitator, I think that Patty provides a more all around game play that outperforms what Dre brings to the table. But the combination of the two are necessary right now and Patty will not start ahead of Dre. Next year Im pulling for Patty to take that spot, I think he can do it and Dre may be out the door.

    Secondly, I love Camby. The man has been a BEAST on the boards. Way more than I could have ever expected of a man that is in the last years of his career. With this in mind, I can't believe that he has a green light to shoot the ball outside of tip-ins off of rebounds. I hate that he takes those mid-range shots, I don't care how open he is....there's a reason he's that open!

    Lastly, I can't wait for Pryz to get back to his normal self. He is such a huge body and can shut down the lane with the best of them. But he is obviously not 100%. The guy can barely get off the ground and seems real cautious of the ankle. Not complaining, just pointing out that the team misses that Joel aggressiveness that we've come accustomed to over the years.

    First post, sorry it was so long...GO BLAZERS!

    by Lucius Verinus on 1/10/2011 12:04 PM
  30. Lucius Verinus:
    Welcome aboard. Mills is a variation to Dre because he can shoot the three and open the floor. When Dre is in the game unless Matthews is hitting the three the defense sags to the middle against LMA. Dre is our starting PG, but he won't last forever. With Mills getting experience the changing of the guards when ever it comes will be in the flow.

    I remember back when Camby was deadly at those mid range shots and he still does a good job. I used to hate him for destroying Portland with those shots. The shots looks horrible, but many goes in.

    by Hg on 1/10/2011 12:22 PM
  31. Great Blog and Great Game just not the results we hoped for. I think there is a lot they can learn from this game.

    LA continues to play like an all star!

    by RedRudy5 on 1/10/2011 12:25 PM
  32. On my way out the door to start another glorious semester of grinding college classes, but wanted to quickly make a note of something,

    Islander: I believe, and I could be wrong, that in the original article explaining the origins of the goggles, it mentioned that Rudy had seen an eye doctor, and that no correction was indicated. So, not sure his eyesight is the problem actually. That's why it's a tease, because even though there is no discernible problem, Rudy squints sometimes when he shoots.

    by EowynAmarie on 1/10/2011 12:40 PM
  33. HG -

    I wanted to try and find a shot chart for Camby for this season, but after searching, all I could find was last years season shot chart stats....I was hoping I was wrong and it just happened to be coincidence that he was taking those shots when I happened to be watching lol.

    2009-2010 season stats:
    Mid-range jumper (between free-throw line and 3 pt)
    comined total : 36-122 = 30%

    Under/around basket: 155-282 = 55%


    I'm guessing that his stats this year are similar but if anyone can find out what they are, I'd be interested in knowing.

    by Lucius Verinus on 1/10/2011 12:48 PM
  34. i don't give a rats behind if James has any sportsmanship. that's not the issue here (btw Herr, interesting how you say "we" when the blazers win and "you guys" when the blazers lose). we had some very fine moments, but missed some opportunities.

    you could point to a lot of things which, if had gone different, may have resulted in a win. too many outside shots; drought in the second quarter; Andre going solo for the last shot in regulation. if we improve on any one of those, then maybe we come away with a win.

    alas, it just didn't happen. i really thought when we had that seven-point lead at 1:42 that we would hit some free throws, hold on and win, but we went dry from the field (another drought to be honest).

    and it really was the big three of the heat that beat us. they scored 96 of their team's 107 points. let's put that in perspective: our backup pg outscored miami's non-big three, 13-11.

    Patty had a great fourth quarter, Nicolas was great throughout the first three quarters, and LaMarcus proved he is one of the best pf's in the league. yes, i said it; not just in the western conference, but in the league.

    there really are no moral victories, but there are things you can take away from tough, close games like this. Patty mentioned this in his post-game remarks to Wheels, and it's true. we have a young team still learning to connect together, and games like this will serve as a learning experience (we never stop learning, do we?).

    the agony and ecstasy of this loss was a hard rollar coaster to ride, but in the end, i'm confident we can move on from the loss and bring our top game forward this season.

    ~ Kassandra

    by Kassandra on 1/10/2011 3:46 PM
  35. phi slamma: really? we weren't beat because we lacked that "killer instinct". we lost because the heat are a superior team. i thought we played damn well and we played damn hard. sure, we made some mistakes down the stretch but remember who we were playing.

    yep, we got work to do but i like the direction we're heading. i'm watching us play good basketball with a lot of fight. right before roy went down we looked lost and stagnant. that's no longer the case.

    go blazers!

    by thedanman on 1/10/2011 4:04 PM
  36. and kassandra, you got it right. right now, lamarcus aldridge IS one of the top power forwards in the league. the dude is playing like a beast!

    by thedanman on 1/10/2011 4:08 PM
  37. i thought i'd add another thought or two.

    hg: Patty's comments about learning, moving forward and staying connected with each other were excellent. he certainly doesn't sound like a second-year player in an interview.

    Tiago: i din't see much to mention in Wesley's game last night. his two primary defensive responsibilities combined for like 78 points. his shot selection was ludicris. thirty percent shooting against anyone just isn't going to get it done. and "beloved Kassandra?" interesting.

    regarding the three goggles: it's much, much more than a gimmick or a taunt of it's own. it's representative of the camaraderie between players on the team. if you read the back story a while back on Casey Hohdal's blog you'd know that. sure, we could get ride of it. while we're at it, why don't we get ride of the term "rip city." after all, we're not rip city; we're the rose city. so if we're getting rid of things which bring this team and city together, let's get rid of all of them.

    ~ Kassandra

    by Kassandra on 1/10/2011 4:16 PM
  38. thedanman: I share your enthusiasm for the team turning a corner and improving. Your statement about the Heat being a superior team is not the issue. You are taking the safe road. Of course Miami is a better team! But the point is that inferior teams beat superior teams all the time in the nba. And as stated earlier this trend of losing leads in the 4th quarter extends well beyond this one game. C'mon now, you know it and I know it.

    by Phi Slamma on 1/10/2011 5:43 PM
  39. I must admit that Kassandra has a valid point. The three-point goggle gesture is for the betterment of the team. And maybe in the future the players might decide to moon the crowd after every defensive stop. A chin-up on the rim after every dunk. Hey, how about the mascot does three push-ups at half court after every three-pointer? Original idea? No, but who cares? What was all the hub-ub about Lebron and co. doing a little pre-game jiggy before a game? Afterall, I'm sure it was a bonding experience. Have him ride out on a donkey while declaring himself the "Chosen One". He's already made an a-- of himself anyways. As far as the term "Rip City", it has no capacity to offend anyone. It is simply a phrase coined by a radio announcer who announces a basketball game to blazer listeners. Put your actions to a simple test, and stop trying to spin the benign. If it offends the other team then it draws negative attention to the organization.

    by Phi Slamma on 1/10/2011 6:22 PM
  40. haven't read most of the comments

    my view of the game roughly:

    the blazers had a shot to win it, and it didn't go. you can't feel too bad about that.

    if lebron is going to sink a handful of 27ft 3s to win, there isn't much you can do. he was out of this world.

    on the bright side of things, LaMarcus the Barbarian fought well and the team showed great promise.

    i've long been confident that LA would start giving all-star caliber performances on a regular basis after turning 25.

    in his last 5 games, he's averaging 27.8pts & 11.6 rebs.

    on the season 20.5pts and 8.8 rebs, which isn't too bad.

    by reverse on 1/10/2011 7:25 PM
  41. I won't talk about the heat or yesterday's game because im sure there are points that i could make and other points i could disagree with so no wasting time there. And i could say so much about whatever that guy's name is.. uggh!! Anyway what i will say is i like what i see from this Blazer squad now! And it's about time.. let's start winning now and get a streak going between now and the all-star break and were right there with the top 4 teams in the west! The schedule has some pre-determined W's especially with the 75% of blazers games at home.

    Let's GO BLAZERS!

    by Ballinrotation365 on 1/10/2011 7:37 PM
  42. batum and aldridge were reason enough to see a bright future after this game:


    if big men take a bit longer to develop, LA at 25 and nic at 22 should be productive together for many years, and wes will be right there with them.

    the heatles (ha) have won 21 of their last 22 and are on a serious roll.

    portland will have a roll of their own this month though. if they lose more than 2 or 3 this month, i'd be surprised.

    by reverse on 1/10/2011 8:41 PM
  43. All I can say is that it came down to execution down the stretch.

    by blazerdarren77 on 1/10/2011 10:28 PM
  44. Alright.....I did it, I watched the 4th quarter. There was just too much chatter, and I had to see for myself what happened!

    IMO: Dre lost us the game. I keep seeing comments about Miami's defense not giving us anything but that shot. I watched it over and over and over again. And I have to disagree. There was little to defend, and that stellar Miami defense left a very potent LMA with a pretty clear path to the hoop. I saw Dre at mid-court, dribbling down the clock, then a soft "screen" by LMA, which tripped up Lebron a tad, but the help was there, then Dre tripped himself a bit, then he threw up an off-balance brick, which he rebounded, promptly throwing up another. Never once did he appear to even LOOK to see who was open as he made his "move" (with two Heat defenders all over him). LMA was pretty open with a relatively straight path to the hoop, but Dre didn't even look for him. I think his ego was hurt that he was on the bench so long (and has been late in games recently), and he wanted to show he could get it done. But that's not his job. His job was to pass the ball to the guy who Miami had yet to be able to stop.....Lamarcus Aldridge. I know there is a lot of love for Dre here, and around Rip City in general, but I think he's a liability, and he's showing that even more since BRoy went out (which I do believe many thought was the key to getting Dre more into his game, as he would no longer be deferring to Brandon.....but I don't think Dre, deep down inside, like deferring to anybody).

    I suppose an argument could be made that we should never have let them get that close, but I think Miami just happens to have two of the best players in the world, who are both ultra-clutch, and that allowed them to bring it even. I failed to see the vast mistakes everyone else did. I saw Wesley hit a 2, then a 3, then he missed a 3. I saw LMA hit one, miss one under the basket, then hit a big one. Did any other Blazers even shoot the ball in the last 2 minutes? Oh right, Dre did. I did see the mis-match with Patty on Lebron, but really, I don't buy that somehow Miller was going to stop him either (especially when our two lock-down defenders couldn't!) I guess if it's anyone's fault beyond Millers, it would be Nate for putting him back in, when Patty was hot (he really should have known that no one was going to stop Lebron or Wade, and that the key was to get more points up than they did.....ala Patty and LMA, since that's what was working!).

    Looking forward to the Knick game. Hope to see Lamarcus have a nice little outing against Amare, who I think I actually dislike even more than smug, arrogant, spank-my-own-bottom-LeBron :)

    by EowynAmarie on 1/10/2011 11:44 PM
  45. Off topic time!

    First, you never bring a knife to a gunfight. Thus, you never bring a Duck to a Tiger fight. Sad loss, but I enjoyed sleeping next to my old dog rather than watching the game (yet, I hate football and don't care about the Ducks or the Beavers and to be honest I'm glad they lost so I don't have to hear about it anymore but that's just me being selfish). I heard it was a good game, but whatever. Moving on.

    Second, EA, I hear you don't like Griffin. For some reason, I don't either. You know that I like LeBron and you know why I like LeBron so I must ask... Heat or Clippers? Who do you want to win?

    Third, you should upload that video and send it to me on my facebook, I'm curious to see how open LMA was. I really do not get why we always tend to screw up on our last second shot. I know why we screw up in overtime (the fact the other team forces the OT and not us thus bringing the momentum), but I'd like to see what really was going on, because I would have gone to LMA on that play. Another reason to question Nate as coach...

    by Herr on 1/11/2011 12:52 AM
  46. I personally don't see anything to complain about in the Miami loss. we played a GREAT game against a GREAT team and almost pulled it out. I am very proud of the effort they put forth and it will only get better. They have proved now that THIS TEAM can compete with the best in the league. As far as all this LeBron stuff, it doesn't phase me a bit...I actually like it. Makes the game fun again to watch. I really have hated seeing the NBA turn into a "soft league" like it has. I use to love seeing a good argument with the ref's and some good physical play in the paint. Ah, the good ole days.

    peace out,

    by daddylogan on 1/11/2011 1:45 AM
  47. daddy: couldn't agree more. yeah, lebron made me pissed off for taunting the crowd that way but deep down i smiled. it's fun having a bad guy out there like bill lambeer. poor comparison but you get the point.

    phi slamma: yes, if making the most accurate assessment and observation is taking the easy way out, i'm guilty.

    by thedanman on 1/11/2011 5:21 AM
  48. Kassandra: Yeah, beloved (I couldn't find another good word ^^), and I agree with you.

    Goggles talk: Dunno why talk so much bout that... I think it's ok, and it's the same thing as holding your hand high after the shot (like someone alrdy said in another post), or making a "three-point-symbol" and ca-ching it (dunno how to discribe, hope u guys understood).

    LBJ talk: No, he's not better than Kobe (IMO), and I do not like him either. But even so, we gotta respect his habilities (that are awesome), and what he brought to the game.

    I agree with the guy who said that he could be a bad example to the kids (I sincerely think LBJ never thought of that, or don't care), or that the old Basketball GREATS were always great persons too, but LBJ (at least) helped to rise the basketball popularity, helped to bring more fans to the game, more sponsors, more visibility, etc.

    Well, that's my opnion on the subjects.
    I still think that if we can improve (not that much), we can get to 50 wins or so.


    by Tiago Torigoe on 1/11/2011 8:35 AM
  49. Herr: sorry, I don't have space on my DVR to keep stuff and my hubby keeps forgetting to hook the DVD-recorder back up, lol! I don't know if not utilizing the pick and roll play Nate set up was a Nate decision or and Andre decision. All I know is that LMA moved up, set the pick, Lebron kind of stumbled around it as LMA's defender picked up Dre, leaving LMA with open space for a second or two (or even three), just like what is supposed to happen. LMA didn't really roll, cause Dre wasn't looking for him, at least that is how it appeared to me. He started to move into the lane, but then just kind of stopped. Like I said, Dre stumbled a bit on Lebron as Lebron came around the pick, so perhaps he was distracted, but his head was down and he was looking at the bucket and not the floor. I don't know, I just got the impression from watching it that there were better options, and Dre just wanted to be the hero. Dre makes some really batty decisions sometimes, and I don't get it. I know most people highly value him, but all I see is a very quiet, but extremely large EGO player. I am probably wrong, but its' just my impression of him, a guy I know only through the media and the game. In my opinion, Dre taking the shot while being guarded by Lebron and another Heat player was NOT what Nate and LMA had planned or were expecting.

    As for the Clippers vs. Heat, I want Lebron to dunk all over Griffin and for the Heat to just blow them out of the water :) That would make me happy! Here's to hoping they didn't waste all their superfriends powers on us!

    by EowynAmarie on 1/11/2011 8:43 AM
  50. Tiago Torigoe:

    LBJ's mocking of slapping himself on the butt was because a kid at the Rose Gorden last year slapped LBJ on the butt as he went by as respect to LBJ, but LBJ got all bent out of shape and really ranted about the situation. That is how I remember it. Long short, He doesn't care about the kids or anybody else, After all he is the chosen one. puke!!!!!!!!


    by Hg on 1/11/2011 10:38 AM
  51. Eowyn Amarie:

    I took your word for the last play of the Miami game and referred to it on BE.

    As far as Dre's ego getting in the way, I am sure that is true. All American’s or maybe all humans has egos to deal with. Few can control it all the time, Many can control it most of the time, most of us we lose control many times.

    I think added to your comment that we had better options, is that most of the times our actions are predetermined or conditioned. If Dre started to drive with the intent to score he would shoot regardless of what prevailed. If Dre started to drive with the intent to pass, then he would more then likely passes the ball whether that was the best option or not. Other then that if his ego got in his way or not, one could only guess, but I agree with you.


    by Hg on 1/11/2011 10:57 AM
  52. So in today's talk chalk I asked what Rice though of the goggles. He said it very well, "anything that brings the fans together with the players is a good thing". I agree, but Casey didn't ask about the whole mocking thing.

    All I can say is, if LeBron James did the 3 goggles after his OT 3, the crowd would have been in complete chaos, and we'd be looking at him a lot differently, and with even more hatred.

    Sorry Rice, but I do feel the goggles will have an end, and they should

    by Herr on 1/11/2011 1:04 PM
  53. Wesley Matthews' most notable change has been in his amount of time on the court, up from 28 minutes per game during the Brandon Blazers period to an LMAesque 37.4 minutes per game in the absence of Employee No. 7. Matthews has, on the face of it, used this increased court time to score more points — up from 14.1 PPG to 19.0 — but when the increased court time is factored into the equation we actually see his Points Per 36 Minutes totals remain almost unchanged — up from 18.2 to 18.27 (rounded to 18.3).

    Moreover, Matthews efficiency in getting to his scoring numbers has been tempered somewhat, falling from 1.19 points per shot to a somewhat more modest level of 1.12 — about a 6% fall in scoring efficiency. Using our easy-to-understand baseball analogy, Matthews' 6% decline at the plate has been the equivalent of a .310 hitter falling off to .291. He's still punching home RBIs in the same quantities, it's just that Matthews is now using more "outs" to get the job done. Hopefully that makes sense.

    This is not in any way to disparage the superlative job Matthews has done thus far this year, by the way — it's simply a matter of pointing out that his extraordinarily high scoring efficiency is "falling to earth" a bit, as might be expected.

    I was curious as to whether Wesley has been playing out of his head this year and calculated his "Points Per Shot Used" for last year as a rookie in Utah. I discovered, much to my amazement, that Matthews had scored an extremely efficient 1.18 points per shot used — which may in some way explain the infatuation of Kevin Pritchard and the Blazer brain trust with him in last year's free agent market. Simply put, Wesley Matthews has demonstrated an ability to put up points without shooting his team into oblivion. I've also learned that he gets the Andre Miller award for never yet having missed a game in his career.

    by Gavinfan on 1/11/2011 1:49 PM
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