Blazers/Clippers Pre-Game Thoughts
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  1. DHawes22
    Posts: 6488

    Posted 12/30/2009 1:14 PM

    The Portland Trail Blazers (20-13) look to bounce back and end 2009 on a high note as the Los Angeles Clippers (13-17) come to the Rose Garden for the first matchup between the two teams this season. This is an important game in regards to making the playoffs, as a loss would slide the Blazers all the way down to 8th, while a win keeps them right in the thick of things for a seeds 4-6. With all the unfortunate injuries, Portland can't afford to have any more hiccups as they did on Monday night.

    Although the Clippers are not a threat to make the playoffs or may ever be with their management, they still posses a plethora of big men that Portland would kill for right about now. If the 76ers can score 60 in the paint with Dalembert out most of the night with foul trouble, I worry what Kaman and Camby will do tonight. Not only on offense, but Marcus Camby has the ability to be a game-changer on defense which could force Portland to play from the outside. Camby's status for the game tonight is in question, so it will be a huge plus if he can't go tonight. If the Blazers decide to become a jump shot oriented team and they shoot like they did against Philly, it will be another long walk out of the Rose Garden for Trail Blazer fans. Even if the Clips are doing a good job of protecting the key, go inside to draw a double team or get to the foul line. Aggressiveness never hurts.

    It will all come down to guard play tonight. I think the Clipper bigs could bother LaMarcus tonight on the blocks, which will force the Blazer guards to step up. Baron Davis is the type of player who still has the ability to score 40 on any given night and will his team to victory. Normally Baron is bigger than many of he point guards he goes up against, but Andre has the size to keep Davis from backing him down on the blocks. Although he may have to chase down Eric Gordon around on defense, Brandon needs to abuse Gordon on offense. Eric is only 6'3", so with a 3 inch height advantage, he should be able to put him on the blocks and shoot that fade away he loves to shoot so much.

    I really have an awful feeling in the pit of my stomach about the game tonight. I don't think Portland will overlook the Clips at all, especially after losing to them at home last year in double overtime and after stubbing their toe the previous game to the Sixers. Although, I have a bad feeling and really don't think we'll have an answer at all for Chris Kaman, I can't pick against my Blazers. Brandon Roy will somehow, someway lead the team to victory and Andre Miller will give us the easy buckets we'll need. As long as we don't get too stagnant on offense, we can win this game. Make note of the movement on offense while watching the game. If we lose, go back and see how many times we went one on one or bled the shot clock down. If we pull it out, check out stats like fast break points, points in the paint, and team assists. My prediction: 20+ assists from the team will get the job done tonight.
    Game 34 Prediction: Trail Blazers 101 Clippers 98
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