Found January 31, 2013 on NorthWest Sports Beat:
Picimg_nba_mar_13_a145
Top Blazers If you’re waiting for this year’s Portland Trail Blazers squad to give in and settle for a lottery pick, you’re looking in the wrong place. “Give up” is not a part of this team’s vocabulary. Portland started last week off with another loss to the lowly Washington Wizards, extending its losing streak to six games. Their last win had come against the Miami Heat, and as triumphant as it may have been at the time, it seemed like it occurred ages ago. Nicolas Batum earned his second career triple-double against the Clippers. (Photo: Bruce Ely/The Oregonian). With a home game against Indiana, as well as a back-to-back against the Lob City Clippers, the Blazers’ chances at breaking the losing slump seemed bleak; however, bleak it was not and Portland was able to get back to its winning ways with a 100-80 (Chalupas!) win over the Pacers. The marquee Saturday/Sunday matchups against the Clippers still loomed, but Portland was back to .500 after watching its record deteriorate over the past couple weeks. Even when Clippers point guard Chris Paul doesn’t suit up, Los Angeles is a force to be reckoned with. Sporting one of the best records in the league, Lob City still has the likes of Blake Griffin, Caron Butler, Jamal Crawford and Eric Bledsoe, to name a few. On top of all that, playing a home game against them, then flying to LA to take them on the very next night, is a less-than-ideal scenario for the Blazers. Portland made the most of its home game and put on a show for the crowd at the Rose Garden Saturday night. Down 100-91 with 2:38 to play, Portland seemed to be headed to another loss. However, riding a three by Damian Lillard and two clutch free throws by JJ Hickson, Portland outlasted the Clippers 101-100. On the last shot of the game, a mid-range jumper from Jamal Crawford clanked the back rim and Nicolas Batum grabbed his 10th rebound of the game, sealing his second career triple double (the first came earlier in the week against Washington). Talk about a wild ending. The magic did not carry over to the next night, as Portland seemed gassed from the get-go and couldn’t keep pace with the up-tempo Clippers, dropping the second game 96-83. Ending the week at 2-2 was a very welcome sight for a team that had just endured a six-game losing streak. Now, to the weekly awards. First Star: Nicolas Batum (1/26: W vs. LA Clippers) Week in and week out Nic Batum continues to prove his worth to the Trail Blazers, and his recent production is earning him every penny of that new contract. It’s also earning him the respect of his teammates, including youngster Damian Lillard. Big win tonight for us… Congrats to @nicolas88batum on his second triple double . Not an all star but playing like one… #RipCity — Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) January 27, 2013 In this past week alone, Batum notched his first and second career triple doubles. One in a loss against the Washington Wizards, in which Batum wasn’t as thrilled about the achievement since the Blazers lost, and the second one came in a win on Saturday night against the Clippers. This edition of the Batum triple double was much more meaningful as it came in a victory, and as soon as Nic grabbed his 10th rebound of the game—as time expired—he didn’t stop clutching the basketball. Grinning from ear to ear, you could tell this feat meant a lot more to the forward from France. In 41 minutes Saturday night, Batum scored 20 points on 7-of-15 from the floor—including 4-of-9 from beyond the arc—and he shot 2-for-2 from the charity stripe. He also added 12 assists, 10 rebounds, one steal and a block to power the Blazers to the victory. Rip City is glad to have Nic back in black and red, and he certainly is making good on his new contract. Second Star: JJ Hickson (1/23: W vs. Indiana) A double-double machine, Hickson was back at it last Wednesday night against the Pacers, helping Portland bust out of the 6 game losing streak. J.J. Hickson played a big role in Portland’s blowout over  Indiana. (Photo: Bruce Ely/The Oregonian). In 30 minutes of play, Hickson dropped 14 points on an incredible 7-of-10 from the floor. He also added 13 rebounds and three assists in the Blazers’ 100-80 win over visiting Indiana. Hickson’s high energy style of play is evident each time he takes the court, and it never looks as though the forward takes any time off. He’s been a pleasant surprise for the Trail Blazers since last year, and while it will take a lot to keep him around, Rip City is hoping Hickson is in for the long haul. Third Star: LaMarcus Aldridge (1/27: L @ LA Clippers) Portland’s All-Star continues to log quality minutes on a nightly basis, and in a game that saw the Blazers in a hole early, he continued to impress. Sunday’s matchup with the Clippers was more a show of what L.A. could do after a loss than Portland capitalizing after a big win. Aldridge did everything he could to keep Portland competitive, but it ultimately proved to not be enough as the Clippers cruised to a 96-83 victory. In 39 minutes, LaMarcus scored 21 points on 9-of-14 from the floor and 3-of-4 from the free throw line. He also added 11 rebounds, four assists, one steal and a block as he proved to be Portland’s only bright spot on Sunday. Dunk of the Week: Damian Lillard vs. Washington Lillard put his dunking ability on display last Monday night as he posterized Nene in the 4th quarter. Enjoy. CLICK HERE TO CHECK OUT THE BLAZERS BLOG IN OUR CLUBHOUSE TODAY AT NWSB!
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
RELATED ARTICLES

Portland Trail Blazers Trade Scenario

This is the point of the season that NBA fans all aspire to be General Managers, I am no different. In my column last week, Close Games Bring Portland Trail Blazers to a Cross Roads, I put forward that it is time for the Trail Blazers to deal LaMarcus Aldridge. This week I suggest a [...] [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]

LaMarcus Aldridge comes up big late for Portland

Portland star LaMarucs Aldridge doesn’t get talked about enough nationally. Why? He is not playing in LA, Miami, New York or Chicago. Last night in Portland’s two point win over Dallas the All Star shined late. The Mavericks were leading as many as 21 points in the third quarter and by 7 points as late as the final two minutes of the game but it was time for Aldridge to take...

LaMarcus Aldridge Sinks Game-Winning Turnaround Jumper vs. Mavs

After trailing by as many as 21 points, the Blazers roared back – going on a 10-3 run in the final minute. LaMarcus Aldridge was unbelievable, sinking a corner 3 and a turnaround jumper at the buzzer all in the final 5 seconds to give Portland a 106-104 victory over the Mavs. It was Aldridge’s 2nd career game-winner, the other was also against Dallas.

Mavs called for rare technical foul vs. Portland

With six seconds remaining in the second quarter Tuesday night, the Dallas Mavericks and Portland Trail Blazers took the court for what both teams figured would be the final play of the half. Mavericks point guard Darren Collison, with his team leading 59-44, took the inbounds pass up the court and began driving to the basket when he was bumped by Portland guard Ronnie Price. Whistles...

A Portland Trail Blazers Trade Scenario

This is the point of the season that NBA fans all aspire to be General Managers, I am no different. In my column last week, Close Games Bring Portland Trail Blazers to a Cross Roads, I put forward that it is time for the Trail Blazers to deal LaMarcus Aldridge. This week I suggest a deal. I propose the Blazers trade Aldridge to the Milwaukee Bucks for rookie PF John Henson, C...

J.J. Hickson and LaMarcus Aldridge post monster double-doubles

J.J. Hickson's career year continued Tuesday with a monstrous line: 26 points (9-13 FG, 8-8 FT), 15 rebounds, an assist, a steal and two blocks. LaMarcus Aldridge added 29 points (12-20 FG, 4-5 FT), 13 rebounds, three assists, a steal two blocks, and a three. We expect lines like this from Aldridge. Now Hickson is showing that he's capable of big lines, too. Hickson...

Report: Cavaliers interested in Oden

Greg Oden's next comeback could be with the Cavaliers. A person with knowledge of Cleveland's interest said the team is exploring the possibility of signing Oden, the former No. 1 overall pick whose NBA career has been sabotaged by injuries. The Cavs are doing their due diligence while looking at Oden, said the person who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity...

Blazers erase 21-point deficit vs. Mavs

LaMarcus Aldridge hit a turnaround jumper at the final buzzer and the Portland Trail Blazers came back from a 21-point third-quarter deficit to beat the Dallas Mavericks 106-104 on Tuesday night. Aldridge finished with 29 points and 13 rebounds for Portland, which trailed 101-94 with 2:18 left. J.J. Hickson had a season-high 26 points and 15 rebounds. After Wesley Matthews made...
CLUTCH SHOT

LaMarcus Aldridge's buzzer beater tops Mavs

Video: For the win!

Aldridge's buzzer-beater tops Mavericks

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- LaMarcus Aldridge hit a turnaround jumper at the final buzzer and the Portland Trail Blazers came back from a 21-point third-quarter deficit to beat the Dallas Mavericks 106-104 on Tuesday night. Aldridge finished with 29 points and 13 rebounds for Portland, which trailed 101-94 with 2:18 left. J.J. Hickson had a season-high 26 points and 15 rebounds. After...

Oden aims for return; Heat, Cavs eye center

Former NBA center Greg Oden is hoping to return next season and the Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat appear to be the front-runners to land the 7-footer who last played in 2009. Injuries have derailed the career of Oden, the former No. 1 overall draft pick who left Ohio State in 2007 after one season, since he entered the NBA. Oden has undergone three microfracture surgeries...

LaMarcus Aldridge Hits The Game-Winner Vs. Mavericks (Video)

The Dallas Mavericks took on the Portland Trail Blazers Tuesday night and it seemed it would be a blowout as the Mavericks had a sizeable lead, but Portland would make a run. LaMarcus Aldridge would hit the turnaround jumper from the inbounds pass to seal a win for Portland and even more entertaining was Aldridge’s three-pointer [...]The post LaMarcus Aldridge Hits The Game-Winner...

Blazers' Adridge hits buzzer-beater to stun Mavericks

PORTLAND -- Even before LaMarcus Aldridge’s 18-foot turnaround baseline jumper went through the net to give Portland a 106-104 victory over Dallas Tuesday night at the Rose Garden, teammate Nicolas Batum was racing across the court, his hands raised in jubilation. “He said he had a lot of faith in me,” Aldridge said, laughing. “That’s good, because I didn’t know yet...
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.