Everyone talked about how big the matchup with Boston was, but in my opinion, Monday night's game against the Nuggets in Denver is the most important game of the season, so far, for the Trail Blazers. Both teams have 17-10 records and hence, they sit tied for the top spot in the Northwest Division. So the team that wins on Monday takes takes a lead in the division. That fact makes Monday's contest much more critical than an away game against an Eastern Conference opponent.
But that's not all. The team that wins on Monday almost certainly has the momentum going into Tuesdays rubber match at the Rose Garden. If the Red and Black can somehow get two wins against Denver in two days? You can't overstate how important that would be.
But how to get to Denver? The snow/ice storm has made getting out of Portland International Airport next to impossible. The Blazers get around in a private jet, so they're not subjected to all of the same difficulties that commercial air traveler have deal with, but private jet or not, ice on the runway is ice on the runway.
So how are they going to get to Denver? Well, the team has already boarded a bus to Eugene, where conditions are a much more manageable 42 degrees with regular ol' Oregon rain. The team will fly out of Eugene, getting into Denver sometime later tonight, Portland weather be damned.
I'm guessing something similar will be done for the trip back to Portland unless conditions change before Tuesday.
So even if you're stuck at home tomorrow, you'll still be able to see what I'm guessing is going to be a heck of a basketball game on Monday. Tipoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. and will be televised locally on KGW Channel 8. Tune in.