Friday, January 2, 2009

Hornets Preview

UPDATE: Joel Przybilla is a go for tonight's game (Wrist), and Roy is actually at about 50/50 (Hamstring). He will do some game speed before the game to see how he feels. It will be a gametime decision.

Tonight’s game against the Hornets will be an interesting and telling game for the Blazers. I am interested to see how they will play after such a big win on Tuesday. I think how they come out tonight will tell us how far along the Blazers really are. Most young teams have a hard time coming out and playing well after such an emotional win, so a good performance tonight out of our guys would be extremely encouraging.

It is reported on the Trail Blazers website that they will again be without Brandon Roy, who is officially listed as questionable. So it will again take a balanced attack tonight from everyone on our team to fill the offensive void left by Roy. Here are my keys to the game.

Keys to the Game

  1. Aldridge Must Control David West Without Much Help
    1. New Orleans has a ton of 3-pt. shooters who are great at what they do, so we cannot afford to send constant double teams at David West, leaving Aldridge one on one. If he can somewhat contain West, I think we will have a good shot at winning.
  2. We Must Keep Chris Paul Out of the Lane
    1. Easier said then done, but similar to West, we cannot afford to double team/help off too many of their players. They thrive on 3’s (3rd best in the league), so limiting their open looks would be huge.
  3. We Must Maximize Every Possession
    1. The Hornets also play at a very slow pace (2nd only to us). So that means the importance of every possession is magnified. We must limit their 2nd chance points and our turnovers. If we do these I think we have enough offensive firepower to win this game.
  4. Take Care of the Ball
    1. No more Travis Outlaw bringing up the ball, we need to make sure and take care of it and limit our turnovers, otherwise New Orleans will have a hayday.
  5. Build Off of Our Boston Win
    1. We need to not forget the execution and focus that we had for the Boston game. Against elite teams, we must bring that every night. Let’s hope the Blazers do bring it.

I am anxious to see how Oden performs tonight, after what I thought was his best performance to date. Also will Aldridge have a hangover from his fierce competition with KG on Tuesday? I sure hope not because this is the 2nd game of a 4 game stretch vs. Boston, New Orleans, Lakers, and Detroit, and if we could come out of that with a .500 record, I would be pretty darn happy.

Gamblers Corner

The Blazers are a 1.5 point favorite with an O/U of 183. I am going to take the Blazers and the under. Even though I think there is a risk of a hangover from the Boston game, I think the 2 days off will help. I like the under because as I mentioned before, New Orleans plays at the 2nd slowest pace in the NBA right after the Blazers.

Goose is going to take the Blazers and the Over.

So Far…

Kyle vs. Spread 2-3

Goose vs. Spread 2-3

Kyle vs. O/U 2-3

Goose vs. O/U 4-1

And the winner of last game’s score prediction was Derek! Although it was a win by default (no one else made a prediction), it was the closest guess we’ve had so far this year! Derek predicted 94-89 Blazers, with the actual being 91-86 Blazers. Great work D-Block! It is now:

Yost – 2

Derke - 1


  1. Very good win Tuesday. It would be great to start off the new year with a win for the Blazers. They need to attack the basket and be aggressive. If Roy is not playing they need the bench come through and provide some scoring. I am also interested to see how Rudy plays tonight if he does get his second start. If all goes well I predict a 103-96 victory by the Blazers. Get some Chalupas!!

  2. 98-94 Blazers. Aldridge goes 25 pts 8rbnds and locks up DWest. Hopefully Rudy shakes off shooting struggles. GO needs to keep playing well too. GO BLAZERS!

  3. So much for Aldridge dominating. He got dominated. We need Roy back ASAP

  4. In regards to the Laker game........Our Bench killed us. Just looking at the box score, which is all I could see of this game.........our bench shot 2 of 21 from the field. That won't help win many ball games.