Found November 30, 2012 on
NorthWest Sports Beat:
Portland Trail Blazers
PDX on a slippery slope
The Portland Trail Blazers have begun their seven-game road trip with three straight losses, but the worst part is that each and every one of their opponents was considered beatable heading into the East Coast swing.
Matchup: Portland (6-9) @ Boston Celtics (8-7)
Venue: TD Garden
Time: 7:30 PM ET
Date: Friday, November 30, 2012
Coming off a loss to the only winless team in the NBA—the Washington Wizards—Portland now travels to Boston to take on the Celtics in their “first real test” of the current road trip.
Trail Blazers have lost 8 straight games in Boston. (Photo: Bruce Ely/Oregonian)
Game Notes/How They Match Up
Despite the differences in their records, the Blazers and the Celtics actually match up quite nicely. Both teams are middle-of-the-road in scoring, both teams are in the bottom 10 in points allowed and both teams struggle rebounding the ball.
Points in the paint have been a problem for these two squads, as neither has truly been able to enforce much of an offensive presence at the rim.
The Blazers are currently sitting at 13th in the Western Conference, while the Celtics are at seventh out East. Neither team is a lock for the postseason, but Boston clearly has the better odds at this point in the year.
What to Watch: Portland
The Trail Blazers entered this season with a fast-break mentality, but they’ve yet to show they can compete at a fast pace on a regular basis.
Against the Washington Wizards, the Blazers scored just one point in transition, which obviously came off a free-throw and not a made bucket. Portland has yet to establish a true go-to option this year behind LaMarcus Aldridge, which means easy points are a welcomed thought for a team still molding their offense.
The Blazers have lost eight straight games in Boston throughout the years, and while it’s going to take an outstanding overall effort to win this one, getting easy points on the break will only help a struggling Portland team.
What to Watch: Boston
The Celtics are going to be without Rajon Rondo because of his in-game altercation with Kris Humphries, which means they must find another way to distribute the ball in their half-court and fast-break offenses.
Batum will match up against Pierce in Friday’s matchup. (Photo: Getty)
Rondo is currently averaging 12.9 assists per game, and the team is third in the league as a result. They’re very good at moving the ball around and they’re solid in the fast break, but they’re going to be looking for someone to take on the role of facilitator with their point guard out.
If LaMarcus Aldridge were set to match up against Kevin Garnett, the game’s key matchup wouldn’t even be in question. The two bigs have had bad blood for each other throughout the years, and the battle between the two of them has been heated on more than one occasion.
However, Garnett is playing center this season, which means the game’s top matchup belongs to Nicolas Batum and Paul Pierce.
At the small forward position, these two players are prominent scorers in their respective offenses. Both can score from the perimeter, both can attack the rim and both ave averaging about 19 points per game.
Each player is a good three-point shooter, but Pierce has the edge at this point in the year, as he’s shooting greater than 40 percent from long distance.
Portland: DAY-TO-DAY—LaMarcus Aldridge, Victor Claver
Boston: OUT—Rajon Rondo (Suspension), QUESTIONABLE—Chris Wilcox, Jeff Green
The Trail Blazers have struggled up to this point in the road trip, and until they can prove they have it in them to win, you have to assume that the opposing team has the edge—whoever it may be.
Blazers 91 – Boston 99
CLICK HERE TO CHECK OUT THE BLAZERS BLOG IN OUR CLUBHOUSE TODAY AT NWSB!
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
With LaMarcus Aldridge and the Portland Trailblazers coming into Boston, The Oregonian posted an interesting article about the matchup: Does Garnett’s style of play, and irritation, bring out the best in Aldridge? Can I quickly dispel this and say no?
According to article, Aldridge has a list of people who really bring out the aggravation in him. Guys like A’mare Stoudemire,...
Here are some more submissions for our contest ending today ( Win a Rondo jersey, Celtics jacket, hat, & $50 gift card ). Feel free to show some love for the submissions you like. Let's go with the "If you don't have nothing nice to say than keep your pie hole shut" though in this comments section. No need to talk smack about others' submissions in order...
WHO'S THE BOSS
Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers was asked for his reaction to the punishment handed down to the Spurs, and he was unfazed.
Nets 95, Celtics 83 Boston Globe WEEI ESPN Boston CSNNE Yahoo (AP) Boston Herald Celts Sent to Showers - Mark Murphy examines the aftermath of the loss and “brawl.” Celts Don’t Pull Punches – Kevin Garnett and Jason Terry had some things to say about Kris Humphries. Division Crown No Longer a Layup for C’s – [...]
BOSTON — Jason Terry has had difficulty finding his niche so far in Boston, but no matter how inconsistent his scoring totals have been, the veteran guard has already made an impression on his new coach.
Terry dropped 17 points to lead all Celtics starters in Boston’s 96-78 victory over Portland on Friday. That came just one week after he was held to five points against Oklahoma...
The Boston Celtics met the Brooklyn Nets earlier tonight at the TD Garden arena, and things got wild. Kris Humphies "punched" if you will, Kevin Garnett in the face while he was going up for a shot. Celtics guard Rajon Rondo didn't like what he saw and went after Kris. The fight went into the crowd, but nothing really seemed to happen after that. Not nearly...
On Wednesday the Celtics lost to the Brooklyn Nets 95-83 on their home court, and Doc Rivers refused to mince words afterwards.
In the wake of a game that saw Rajon Rondo ejected (and his double-digit assist streak end), Rivers pointedly called the team “soft” in his postgame comments. Rivers even seemed to specifically refer to Rondo’s actions, saying “that stuff’s not...
Nov 28, 2012; Boston, MA, USA;Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo (9) emerges from a scrum with the Brooklyn Nets after having his jersey torn off during the first half at TD Garden. Rondo was ejected from the game. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-US PRESSWIRE
Celtics guard Rajon Rondo has been suspended for two games following his actions in the 2nd quarter of Wednesday night’s...
On Wednesday night the Boston Celtics faced the streaking Brooklyn Nets at home. The Nets came into the TD Garden off a big win in their first battle of the NY boroughs and looked to make another statement against their Atlantic Division rival. Tempers flared, a fight broke out, and ejections ensued. Rajon Rondo, Kris Humphries and Gerald Wallace were all ejected from the game...
The NBA will decide by tomorrow afternoon whether Rajon Rondo receives a suspension for his part in the "brawl" last night.
Video courtesy of WEEI's Mike Petraglia.
Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo was ejected in the second quarter of Wednesday night's game against Brooklyn when he shoved Kris Humphries after the Nets forward knocked Kevin Garnett to the ground with a hard foul.
Humphries was given two technical fouls and ejected. Nets forward Gerald Wallace, who joined the fray under the Boston basket, was given one technical, but...
I am in the minority here that I have no problem with Rondo's decision to back up Kevin, who was just wacked in the face on a dirty cheap play. What I do have a problem with is that this escalated and the Nets walked away as winners since the trade off was Kris Humphries for Rajon Rondo, which ultimately costed Boston the game and more importantly, stopped the assist streak...