Nicolas the Great
Was Nicolas Batum going to play in Saturday night’s game? The answer was a resounding yes! Batum said he woke up not knowing whether he could play, but he ended up putting end one of the most impressive displays in the NBA so far this year.
BOXSCORE | My POST GAME NOTES
Portland 117, Denver 97
When: 10:00 PM ET, Saturday, February 4, 2012
Where: Rose Garden, Portland, Oregon
Officials: #26 Pat Fraher, #14 Ed Malloy, #72 J.T. Orr
The Portland Trail Blazers moved to 11-1 at the Rose Garden with a 117-97 whooping of the Denver Nuggets.
1. Nicolas Batum
You didn’t really think anyone else would be at the top of this list did you?
Nicolas Batum knocked down nine three-pointers and scored 33 points in his first game back from a knee injury. Those nine three’s were the most anyone has made in the NBA this year. Batum scored 17 points in a period of less than nine minutes in the first quarter.
The Nuggets tried to come back, but Batum really put this one away early.
2. LaMarcus Aldridge
It will be Batum that gets the most attention from this one, as he deserves, but LaMarcus Aldridge was tremendous as well.
Aldridge made 13 out of 18 from the floor and three out of three from the charity stripe. He finished with 29 points, nine rebounds, and five assists.
Nate McMillan’s biggest problem with the Blazers team so far this year is that they tend to not share the ball well in crucial moments.
Portland was passing it around beautifully in this one.
The Blazers finished with 30 assists on 46 field goals. If they keep sharing the ball this well they will start finding a way to win on the road as well.
1. Not Enough Time for the Bench-
In a game the Blazers won by 20 points it would have been nice to see a little more of the bench. Portland has several youngsters who need the minutes and this was a good chance to get them several minutes.
Two or three minutes isn’t enough in a game like this.
2. Offensive Rebounds-
The Blazers tend to have problems keeping the opposition off the offensive boards. Denver got 12 offensive rebounds Saturday night. It didn’t hurt the Blazers too badly in this one, but in a close game that can be a big problem.
Oklahoma City, the team with the best record in the NBA, will invade the Rose Center Monday night.
Expect a raucous crowd and a great game!