Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Portland Trailblazers vs. Houston Rockets

This may turn out to be the best series in the opening round of the playoffs. The Blazers were trying to bounce back from the butt whuppin they received in game 1. At least we we saw a better Blazers team last night. Brandon Roy went off for 42 pts (7 rebs, 1 ast, 1 blk) and LaMarcus Aldridge reminded us that he still has a mismatch over Luis Scola with 27 pts, 12 rebs, and 3 blks. The Blazers knew they had to win this game and it was pretty much even throughout with both teams making and giving up runs. Rudy Fernandez provided, as usual, a nice spark off the bench with 11 pts.

The Rockets were led, surprisingly by Aaron Brooks. Who would have thunk it? He had 27 pts in game one and 23 pts in this one. The smallish Brooks has shown a propensity to get to the rim at will and run this Rockets team. Yao Ming finally missed a few shots and ended with 11 pts (8 rebs) on 3-6 shooting. Von Wafer came off the bench with his best Vinnie 'The Microwave' Johnson impersonation with 21 pts. Artest hounded Roy a little bit but on the offensive side of the ball, he struggled with 19 pts (on 20 shots).

Key facts:

- On a sad note: Dikembe Mutumbo's knee just gave away and he fell to the ground. It looked eerily similar to Alonzo Mourning's injury that made him retire. Deke announced after the game that he was retiring and that this would be his last game. Big ups to the finger waving big man.

- LaMarcus Aldridge had his mojo back. He used every post move that he's ever learned to abuse Scola (at least this game). He finally got that jumper to go in too. That jumper makes him a hard cover because he has range to about 20 feet.

- Where did Von Wafer come from? I mean I remember him with the Lakers, but I didn't think this kid could play like this. He's quietly given the Rockets some punch off the bench. With a team that doesn't score a lot of points, his 15 or so a game are a lot (yes, he only had 6 pts in game 1, but towards the end of the season Wafer was ballin).

What do you think about this series? Is this going to be a good series? Can the Blazers win this one?


John said...

Please check out my match review. Well what can I say about the Blazers? Clearly they played like they had nothing to loose. All the hype was on the Rockets after that blow out victory from Game 1.

Yao was in foul trouble. Much of the burden was rest upon Artest and Scola. He was not at his best this time. He was outplayed by Aldridge.

But I still feel has the x-factor to win this series and I hope they will utlize the home court status in their two games.

Inquisitive Mind said...

Scola can be the x-factor but I think that with the loss of Dikembe that the Blazers have the edge. They can go 10 deep and their backups (Oden, Outlaw, Fernandez, etc) are just too good. They are going to grow up in this series.