Friday, March 20, 2009

Sound Off: Trail Blazers Lose To Cavs In OT

I'll be honest: Prior to the start of last night's game, I thought Nate McMillan would have done well to rest Brandon Roy. I didn't figure we had much of a chance to beat the Cavaliers in Cleveland with both LaMarcus Aldridge and Nicolas Batum in streetclothes. But once again I was reminded why Coach McMillan is highly-regarded in NBA circles and why I'm some dork working on the internet.

The Trail Blazers gave the Cavs, a team that has lost all of one time at home this season, all they could handle. It wasn't a pretty game, it rarely turns out that way when the Blazers and Cavs get together, but it was a hell of an effort from our boys, an effort deserving of praise. Too much LeBron and not enough ... impartiality kept the Trail Blazers from shocking the world, but a 97-92 overtime loss in the fourth game of a five game road trip on the second night of a back-to-back is nothing to hang your head over.

“We had a shot," said Nate McMillan. "I thought our guys came out and they played. We gave ourselves a chance and down the stretch, we needed to execute. We missed some shots down the stretch. We have to make plays down the stretch and we didn’t do it; they (Cavs) did. They made buckets when they needed to. They got stops when they needed to.”

True enough. You could tell the Trail Blazers bench was out of gas when the overtime rolled around (making Roy's would-be attempt at a three to win the game in regulation all the wiser), but you can't say there was any quit. There wasn't.

Do we come out on top if Aldridge and Batum are available? We'll never know. Both Travis Outlaw (17 points, 7 rebounds), who had a monster dunk which you can watch here (it's at the 1:39 mark) and Channing Frye (14 points, 4 rebounds) had nice games filling in, so who knows if the absence of LA and Nic was the deciding factor.

“Things like this are going to happen, where you have injuries and you’ll be shorthanded," said McMillan. "We don’t play to get close (to winning). I thought the effort was there and we put ourselves in a position to win this game. I thought our guys definitely gave the effort."

That's about all you can ask for. I guess you could also ask for a fair shake, but what would be the point?

Speaking of which, Travis Outlaw, who looked like he might have been fouled during a last game three-point attempt in the corner, had this to say of LeBron's performance:

“He hit some shots. He hit some big shots. I think he did good. He got his other teammates involved. He did other things that helped them.

(Emphasis mine)

Anyone want to take a guess of what those "other things" were that Trav is alluding to?


Fish said...

travis is probably referring to lebron's block on travis's corner three. i know if i were him, that would be up in the front of my mind.

Tom L said...

That was absolutely NOT a block on Travis! He hit Travis' hand and he didn't get to follow through! If you watch the replay you can see Travis' arm get knocked back and to the side pretty bad. Also he absolutely did NOT travel when the retarded refs called him for it the previous possession. No wonder the Cavs are 31-1 at home. The refs made it so easy for them. I feel bad for Travis because he doesn't get any respect at all from those Lebron/Kobe/Wade nurturing refs!! Travis, we know you didn't travel and we know you got fouled! Keep doing what you're doing! Maybe some day there will be a better system to hold the refs accountable and you'll get some calls your way.

John said...

probably talking about the photography at the beginning

corybauer said...

The two defining plays were the travel called and the so-called block on Outlaw's three point attempt.

Both involved Travis, a 6th man bench player, and Lebron James, the future MVP of the 08-09 season. Both went the way of Lebron. We all know had that been Lebron James shooting or driving, there'd have been no travel called (assuming it was a travel in the first place), and there would have been 3 free throws awarded to him.

Mary Jo said...

I liked when I heard Wheels say the Blazers really felt they could win this game. They could have and it would have been a beautiful win! Travis did NOT travel when that call was made..but the Blazers could have made other shots and WILL next time. Oden made a huge difference. Joel was able to rest so does his thing without getting beat up tired and Greg...I liked the fouls he gave! They all did a great job!!! So much fun to watch.

Rick_Dawg said...

Did you say "LeBron's block of Travis?" More like LeBron's hack of Travis. I mean he whacked him good. I'm also thinkin Travis is referring to the "travel" that was called on him. I mean seriously, just last week when Cleveland played Orlando they got a flukey 3 in the key call against Orlando to get the lead and keep it. I mean it's no wonder the Cavs are great at home, they get every frickin call imaginable. My personal favorites are when Roy goes driving to the basket, gets slammed by Ilgauskas or Varejao in the air, and there's no foul call. The officiating in the NBA has become a joke.

michael said...

Yes the officials in the NBA are bias my sister refusses to watch anymore just because of that reason the so-called ALL stars "superstars" can do no wrong and quite frankly it is sick. Great job by the Blazers on the Cavs, I think a few more moments of Oden inside play and even the refs could not of stopped the Blazers from winning.

Tom L said...

I just watched the game again and one thing I didn't notice the first time was Greg Oden and Lebron kinda getting into it. Not only did Oden have 9 rebounds (4 offensive!) in 12 minutes, but he was kinda getting inside Lebron's head and not backing down from him. That is awesome to see! That is what this team needs from Oden (remember the Ray Allen incident too!). Also when the refs quit calling imaginary fouls on him that will help a grip! I don't care what John Canzano says about Oden, I think Oden is doing great and I think he is going to improve so much next year that everyone will know Canzano is a bust! Canzano is always feeding on the negative things with everybody so much I can't stand listening to the BFT any more!!

hg said...

I'm sure he was referring to both plays.

My biggest concern is not how bad the refs are. It's will it affect the future play of our team.

We need to be far enough ahead to overcome the bias, but that is not possible if the refs are so bias they won't let us stay ahead.