Kassandra

Jan 06

      
If you break it down into pieces of six, the NBA season contains 11 sections. With a record of 5-1, Blazers have completed one such section.

Everyone by now knows that the team is gelling together, is undefeated in four home games and has split its road games. It's a crazy season but, sans for a road bump against the Clippers, the Blazers have done what it takes to pull out five wins on the young season.

Coming off impressive wins over the Thunder and the Lakers, Portland finds itself in Phoenix on the second night of a back-to-back.to battle the Suns. Phoenix, which boasts perennial point guard favorite Steve Nash, finds itself 2-4 after it's first half-dozen games. They seem to be made up more of role players than actual difference makers. Let's just say, that this Suns team looks much different than it did 20 months ago when it eliminated the Blazers in the first round of the 2009-2010 playoffs.

Speculation abounds as to how deep the team will go to the bench against Phoenix, but it is likely to be more than the eight or nine guys the team has employed in game action thus far this season. Following a satisfying win over the Lakers last night, it's quite possible we may see the likes Chris, Elliot and Nolan it the floor for some action tonight.

We can also wonder which guy will have the breakout game to lead the Blazers to what we hope will be a win (I'm going with Wesley, but wouldn't be surprised to see Crawford give the home team some fits).

I thought we'd once again it the unique world of facts, thoughts and some other information.

FACTS

* If the playoffs began today, Portland would be the number one seed and host Memphis in the first round.

* If the playoffs begun today, four teams from the Northwest Division (including Portland), would earn playoff berths (sorry about that one, T-Wolves).

* Just one team in the Western Conference (the Blazers) has less than the number "two" showing in either the win or the loss column in the standings. In other words, each other team has either two or more losses and two or more wins.

* Portland's Jamal Crawford leads the league in fourth quarter scoring.

* In three of the five games won this season for the Blazers, the two top scorers in each game have been LaMarcus and Gerald.

* Wesley ranks 15th in the league in 3-pointers made (12).

* Nicolas ranks 19th in the league in 3-point field goal percentage (.474).

* LaMarcus ranks ninth in the league in points per game (23.2) and total points (139).

1998-99 ABBREVIATED SEASON

As most of you know, due to a lockout, the NBA season was cut down to 50 games for that season. Here are a few highlights as they pertain to your favorite team.

* The Blazers had the third best record (35-15) and the best home record (22-3) in the league.

* Mike Dunleavy of the Blazers was named coach of the year.

* The Spurs won 15 of 17 playoff games on the way to their franchise's first title.

* Chris Webber (Kings) and Shaquille O'Neal (Lakers), who worked the halftime and post-game shows for TNT last night, were named to the all-NBA second team.

* Due to the shortened season, there was no all-star game.


 

THOUGHTS

* Kurt Thomas really doesn't play like he's the oldest player in the league.

* Craig Smith continues to be impressive. I'm glad he's seeing time on the court.

* I'm now kind of ashamed to say I had doubts about the trade last year to bring Gerald to Portland.

* Among the weight Charles Barkley has lost apparently included his disdain for the Blazers.

* After spending four mornings on the beach in Oxnard over New Year's I may have to resolve myself to the idea that I will never win a major surfing competition.

* I believe I am the first to post a comment on Adam Bjaranson's first blog. I am honored.

Back to basketball now ... tonight, Phoenix, might surprise us. Time to eclipse the Suns!

~ KMM

In Kassandra's Words features regular blogs throughout the year. Comments and questions are welcome and encouraged. Seasons begin and end; players come and go; our Blazers are forever. Please follow on twitter: @PDXKass
       

7 Comments

  1. Hey Kassandra, I love your blogs. Taking the season one day or one game at a time makes life much easier for me.

    I was surprised that Thomas could push Bynam out of the blocks last night. that may have had as much to do with us going on the run as anything.

    by Hg on 1/6/2012 3:59 PM
  2. good blog

    by jamie (guy) on 1/6/2012 4:02 PM
  3. thanks Hg! i can't keep up with the pace of the season, but i think i can add some things here and there. Kurt really did the best job on Bynum i thought. nothing against the other guys; thought they were battling. Bynum ran out of steam. we took advantage. love to see that!

    ~ KMM

    by Kassandra on 1/6/2012 4:04 PM
  4. Bynum was running straight to the front of the rim. Kurt set up there on defense forcing Bynum to the side and with the strong stance and base that he has he forced Bynum out 1-1 1/2 steps out from the basket. That's the way a pro does it

    by Ancientone on 1/6/2012 4:54 PM
  5. We're thinking alike Kass. This team reminds me A LOT like the 98-99 squad. Let's hope they can capitalize on this season and perhaps do even better than they did. Side note; maybe the NBA should have more lockouts, it seems to work in our favor.

    by blazerdarren77 on 1/6/2012 11:22 PM
  6. Hey Kassandra
    I am sure you are busy, busy, busy. but I am sure you are Mad, Mad, Mad. Not only did the Blazers not play for 48 minutes but they didn't really play for any minutes. I did love EW athletic ability

    I have adventured a prediction one week in advance. I predict we will lose to Orlando and Houston and win the rest.

    by Hg on 1/7/2012 10:28 AM
  7. @Ancientone: that's a fair assessment. Bynum may be supposedly the next great thing in l.a., but very little beats the type of intelligence and experience Kurt possesses.

    @Darren: no more lockouts; just replace the nba administration with competent personnel -- starting with the commissioner. but enough about that. i think we can match up against anyone in the league; it's just a matter of whether we'll come to play that particular night.

    @Hg: i am seemingly slammed right now! new term at schoool, new boyfriend (semi-long distance which i promised myself i would never do!) and many other things. i actually missed the second half of the phoenix game (which is to say i pretty much missed nothing). i went to bed early friday so i could leave for school early saturday morning. i actually think we'll win tonight against orlando and win one of the texas games. winning both would be amazing.

    ~ KMM

    by Kassandra on 1/11/2012 11:43 AM
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