It was another disappointing road loss Thursday night for the Portland Trail Blazers.
BOXSCORE | My POST GAME NOTES
Sacramento 95, Portland 92
When: 10:00 PM ET, Thursday, February 2, 2012
Where: Power Balance Pavilion, Sacramento, California
Officials: #35 Kane Fitzgerald, #60 James Williams, #33 Zach Zarba
Another Disappointing Road Loss
The Blazers led Sacramento by 13 in the second quarter, but they played a poor second half and failed to convert on two chances to tie the game in the last five seconds.
This was an all too familiar sight for a team that is now 3-9 away from the Rose Garden.
LaMarcus Aldridge continues to put up huge numbers for Portland. He led the team with 28 points and 14 boards last night. He did a great job crashing the offensive boards, and he finished with seven offensive rebounds. Aldridge deserves an All-Star spot, and the hope is that he will be named a reserve on February 9.
This guy has done a great job carrying the team so far this year.
2. Kurt Thomas
Kurt Thomas isn’t expected to do much scoring for the Blazers, but he helped the team in a big way last night. Thomas put up 10 points and 5 rebounds in just 18 minutes of playing time. When he is able to contribute this well it takes some of the pressure off others in the lineup.
1. Ice Cold Shooting
The single biggest reason the Blazers lost last night was their ice cold shooting. Portland shot a miserable 4 out of 18 from three-point range. Even worse, the Blazers went just 8 out of 16 from the charity stripe.
Shooting only 50% from the free throw line will lose you a lot of close games.
2. Poor Defense on John Salmons
Salmons has been in a slump for quite a while, but everyone knows he is capable of getting hot. The Blazers didn’t play good defense on him last night, and it allowed him to get his confidence back. In the end, Salmons hit several clutch shots that ended up beating the Blazers.
3. Too Much One-on-One
Nate McMillan said after the game that last night’s loss could largely be attributed to the team’s constant one-on-one play in the second half.
In the first half they were moving the ball around nicely, but down the stretch on the road they seem to revert back to simply trying to take someone off the dribble without passing it around.
The Blazers will host Denver at the Rose Garden on Saturday night.