Trail Blazers vs. Mavericks Post-Game Thoughts: Game 72
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  1. DHawes22
    Posts: 6488

    Posted 03/26/2010 11:15 AM

     Post-Game Thoughts

    After falling behind quickly, 6-0, to start the game, I feared for the worst. Portland failed to come out of the gate strong, Dallas would catch fire, and it would be an uphill climb the entire night with moments of momentum only to be stopped short each time. Luckily, it was just a bump in the road as Portland countered the Dallas 6-0 run to start the game with a 32-21 run to end the quarter. Once the lead was achieved, it was never lost. It took an entire team effort for the Trail Blazers to win their third consecutive game over the Mavericks as LaMarcus Aldridge (20 pts, 10 rebs), Marcus Camby (17 pts, 11 rebs), and Andre Miller (19 pts and 10 assts) all recorded double doubles while Brandon Roy had a quiet, yet extremely efficient and effective outing by dropping 17 points on only 7 shots (made 5), got to the stripe 8 times, handed out 7 assists, and grabbed 4 rebounds.

    "I just tried to be patient and take the looks that were good," said Roy, who scored 16, well below his 22.2 average. "This was a team effort. Everybody stepped up tonight."

    Not only did Aldridge rack up a double-dip, but also pitched in with 5 assists, 1 block, and a steal. It wasn't his offense tonight that blew me away, rather the defense played on arguably the best power forward in the league, Dirk Nowitzki. Standing 7'0" tall with handles like a guard, the quickness of a small forward, and range unmatched by anyone in the game, sometimes you just have to hope and pray Dirk is off his game while trying to defend him. Aldridge did about as good a job you'll see though. He bodied him, got a little nasty with him, maybe forcing him out of his comfort zone. LA never, ever let Nowitzki get free for an open look to get his rhythm and confidence flowing. I've said it before and said it again, when Aldridge plays like the star he can be, Portland gets taken to an elite level. Finally, there is someone else to take the pressure off of Roy, allowing him to dissect the defense.

    "I was trying to body him, not let him catch a rhythm," said Aldridge, a Dallas native. "The team did a good job of attacking him from different spots. He never really figured out our schemes."

    Three stats tell the entire story about the game: points in the paint, fast break points, free throw attempts. While Dallas got hot at times shooting jump shots, mainly Caron Butler (11-19 for 25 pts), they were stationed out on the perimeter all game long. I was proud of the boys for not settling for long-distance jump shots, rather forcing the issue inside which lead to a unexpected, yet welcomed 44-35 interior advantage. Dead last in the NBA when it comes to points in transition, Portland turned the tables around on Dallas and pushed the tempo. After the dust had settled, Portland torched Dallas 16-0 in the fast break department, picking and choosing their spots to run brilliantly. Andre Miller, in particular, had his head up the whole game, always finding a fellow teammate leaking out ahead or contributing with a "hockey assist". Not only did we run and attack the paint, but by being the aggressors, Nate's bunch got to the charity stripe 17 more times than Dallas.

    "We played a complete game tonight," McMillan said. "Our defense was good. We were the aggressors on both ends of the floor."

    After watching the "new look" Mavericks, I am totally sold on playing them in the playoffs. Although, I wouldn't bank on meeting Dallas in the playoffs as the West is so bunched up from 2-5 and 6-8 so anyone trying to predict the end of the season standings would have better luck putting team hats in front of a zoo animal and seeing which two at a time they grab. What makes a matchup so desirable against Dallas is the fact we are two similar teams with one true superstar surrounded by a good, deep cast of players. Dirk and Roy are on the same level in my opinion, but I feel like we have more defenders to throw at him than the Mavs do at Brandon. Give me Andre over Kidd and Camby over Haywood any day of the week and I'll take my chances on Aldridge outperforming Butler. What really is tripping up Dallas right now is the down year Jason Terry is having as he is scoring 3 less a night (16.9 from 19.6) and shooting has plummeted from 46.3% in '09 to 43.8% in '10. If any one of our young, promising players such as Rudy, Batum, or Bayless match Terry on a nightly basis, I see no reason we can't pull off a first round upset.

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  1. Kim~
    Posts: 1137

    Posted 03/26/2010 12:15 PM

    If they keep playing like they did last night, I have no fear of any team we draw in the first round. Bring it!!

    Let's go Blazers !!!!
    I am a fan of scrapping !
  1. ClydeFrog
    Posts: 975

    Posted 03/26/2010 1:59 PM

    Man there are 4 teams vying for slots who knows if we face off against Dallas or not. Its really tough to scoreboard watch right now, except for the Spurs losing. I think we should be owed something nice after getting shafted last year in drawing the one team no one wanted to see in Houston (we would have destroyed the Spurs or Hornets). One team I haven't even though about, but is a possibility is Phoenix. They could get 2 or 3 and and we could 7 or 6. I'd love to see Phoenix or Dallas right now the most with Utah and Denver followed closely. Just no LA in Round 1. The 8th seed would be disappointing in my opinion.
    I am a fan of Watching Elliot Williams Take Flight!
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