Trail Blazers 89 vs Rockets 94 Game Thread
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  1. DHawes22
    Posts: 6488

    Posted 04/09/2012 12:35 PM

    With his 2 blocks, Przybilla is 1 shy of tying Kersey for 4th All-Time. Where will Joel finish when it's all said and done??
    First- Mychal Thompson (768) - 148 behind (0)
    Second - Cliff Robinson (726) - 106 behind (1)
    Third - Rasheed Wallace (693) - 73 behind (4)
    Fourth - Jerome Kersey (621) - 1 behind (2)

    April 9, 2012
    7:00 PM | Rose Garden Arena | Portland, OR
    Trail Blazers (27-30) vs. Rockets (31-25)

    The last homestand of the year starts with the red-hot Rockets. Despite losing their All-Star caliber starting backcourt, Kyle Lowry and Kevin Martin, Houston has not only picked up the pace but elevated their play. The Rockets are the only NBA team to have beat the Lakers, Thunder, and Bulls on the road. And they have already taken two from the Trail Blazers so far this year, a 107-105 overtime win in Houston back on January 14th and a 103-96 victory on February 8th in the Rose City.

    While Kyle Lowry has returned to the lineup for the Rockets, playing 17 minutes off the bench and recording just a single point but dished out seven assists. Kevin Martin is still out but Courtney Lee has picked up where Martin left off. In 16 games as a starter, Lee is averaging 14.7 points, on 44% shooting from the field, in 37 minutes of action. For Portland, Nicolas Batum did not attend shootaround this morning and is listed as a game-time decision with left quad tendinitis. If Batum can't go, Portland will need Matthews, Crawford, and Babbitt to increase their scoring outputs to make up for Batum 15 points per night. There have been rumblings of Jamal Crawford starting at the 2 and moving Wesley over to the 3 if Nic is out of action, but I'd like to see Matthews stay at the 2 (his natural position) and give Luke a meaningful start. Although the Trail Blazers are not mathematically eliminated from the postseason, chances of playing into May are slim. So, with that said, I'd like to use these final nine games to see how a player like Babbitt responds to an increased role.

    Portland is in the midst of playing eight games in 12 nights and coming off a Dallas-Milwaukee road trip which drained the Trail Blazers emotionally. After stunning the Mavericks, in overtime, the team came out strong in Milwaukee before running out of gas during the last 12 minutes. With only one day off in between the road trip and tonight's contest against Houston, energy will be key. Not only energy but bench play. The onus is on the second unit tonight more so than most games because Nicolas could be out, forcing a reserve into the starting lineup. For Portland to win, the bench needs to score at least 25 points. Along with the bench, the Blazers need to crash the boards. We all saw what happened in Milwaukee in the second half -- the Bucks dominated the backboard and ran away with a 49-33 rebound advantage. And unlike the Bucks, the Rockets have SIZE. Marcus Camby, Louis Scola, Patrick Patterson, and Sam Dalembert all have the potential to do damage on the boards if the Trail Blazers aren't ready to battle. I think the first quarter will set the tone for this game. Fatigue and energy shouldn't be a problem for Portland playing in front of Rip City but if they fall behind early, Houston may take that momentum and run with it.

    Three Keys To Victory:
    1) Bench Bunch: Reserves scoring 25+ points
    2) Battling The Boards: Win the rebounding battle or keeping the deficit within 5
    3) Quick Start: Don't fall behind more then 5 points, linger around until the fourth quarter, then go for the win

    Trail Blazers vs Rockets Highlights
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  1. stacksfan2005
    Posts: 363

    Posted 04/09/2012 12:52 PM

    time to forget playoffs and play the young guys, id like to see thabeet play till he fouls out and flynn get 35minutes. wish we still had chris johnson. id also like to see craig smith get some significant minutes i bet he'll surprise everyone who says he's too small to play PF. the only game we should try in the rest of the season is against dallas for sheer pleasure of ruining their playoff chances.
  1. cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 04/09/2012 1:26 PM

    Thabeet sucks period but I would not mind seeing Babbit and N Smith play a little bit more. I know that Flynn is the better backup right now but his return is not guaranteed whereas, smith's is. Play Nolan and maybe you got a real back up PG next year or maybe you increase his trade value this off-season.
    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. sealer legion
    sealer legion
    Posts: 63

    Posted 04/09/2012 3:08 PM

    noo!!! we need Batum :(
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  1. barnettfan
    Posts: 392

    Posted 04/09/2012 4:58 PM

    Hope our shooters are not blinded by the Rockets uniforms
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  1. Tobyus Sanchezo
    Tobyus Sanchezo
    Posts: 1669

    Posted 04/09/2012 5:14 PM

    If Nico can't go , put the Rhino in Coach K!

    Aldridge, Hickson, Rhino.... that's a scary frontline
    I am a fan of multiple All-Stars on the Blazers roster this season!
  1. DHawes22
    Posts: 6488

    Posted 04/09/2012 10:00 PM

    Let's re-check my keys to the game, shall we.
    #1 - 25+ bench points - Portland's bench only got to 24.
    #2 - Keep the rebounding battle close - Portland won the battle under the boards 41-38
    #3 - Fast Start - Portland got behind 7 early, and as many as 14 before tying it in the 3rd.
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  1. DHawes22
    Posts: 6488

    Posted 04/09/2012 10:47 PM

    Post-Game Quotes:
    Coach Kaleb Canales on Goron Dragic-

     “I told the guys – I think he’s kind of playing a little bit like how Ginobili looks out there to me.”
    LaMarcus Aldridge on motivation-
    “Me personally, if I’m going to play, I’m going to be motivated. I don’t need to be in no playoff race to be motivated. This is our job and this is what we love to do so I think guys should come out and still play hard every night.”
    J.J. Hickson on trouble getting over the hump late in games-
    “Late down the stretch – not just this game but all the close games we’ve lost – I think the last four minutes of our close games is where we need to really buckle down and play great team defense and pay attention to detail as a team. We’ve got to execute on offense. We’ve got to know what plays we’re going to, who we’re going to. We just have to execute down the stretch on the offensive and defense end.”

    “It’s not one person or one position. It’s us a whole. Coach Kaleb, he’s doing a great job of giving us defensive schemes to go into the game with and execute, but like I said, down the stretch, he’s not on the court with us. So we have to pay attention to detail and lock in and get stops and execute on the offensive end.”

    Aldridge on the game-

    “We definitely were in the game. We just kind of got flat and their guys didn’t miss too many threes. We tried to give help with their penetration and then they would kick it out to the corner for threes. Give credit to them. They didn’t miss too many threes down the stretch.”

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  1. Tobyus Sanchezo
    Tobyus Sanchezo
    Posts: 1669

    Posted 04/10/2012 2:05 AM

    Fans were heading to the exits at the 4 minute mark. Yes Houston did hit some crunchtime 3's. But I think the wide open layups was the driving factor in some of the Blazermaniacs early departure.
    I am a fan of multiple All-Stars on the Blazers roster this season!
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