No, we were embarassed.
Not only were we embarassed, but we lost against a team that was ultimately without 7 of their key players.
The Bright Spot: Eric got a little back on track, starting cold but getting a drive mid-way through the third. Then he made back-to-back three's and gave the Clips a spark. He finished with 24 and 6 on 8-11 shots. There's the usual Gordon stat line. He still fumbled a few times, with 4 TO's, but he was better.
Kaman had 25, but even that was emberassing(if you hadn't yet figured out, 'embarassing' was tonight's theme. I'll be using it alot).
Bad Loss: Do you remember, one of our games against San Antonio early this season, when Steve complained that we didn't lose to Duncan and Parker, but George Hill and Blair. Tonight we didn't lose to Oden, Fernandez, and Aldridge, we lost to Jeff Pendergraph and Juwan Howard.
Portland fielded a team of: Andre Miller, Brandon Roy,
Travis Outlaw, Nicholas Batum, Rudy Fernandez, LaMarcus Aldridge, Greg Oden, Joel Pryzbilla, Martell Webster, Juwan Howard, Patrick Mills, Jeff Pendergraph, Steve Blake, Jerryd Bayless, Dante Cunningham, and Shavlik Randolph. You realize that there's 16 players there, right? They had so many injuries they got an exception to the 15-man limit. Forget Dunleavy's not-fully-healthy excuse. Screw "When Blake comes back, we'll be fine". Thats variations of what we've heard for years as Clipper fans. They can do it, why can't we? Portland lasts missing 3 starters, 3 key bench players, and 1 rotation player, and find a way to win while we satisfy ourselves by saying we'll get over the hump when a rookie returns, a guy who has never played and whose return date keeps getting pushed back and back. Portland found a way to win missing half a team. We wait for the occasional win to find us. If our win vs. Boston was an adjournment of the Dunleavy case, I think we, the jury, can agree now: the requiem's off with his head. Time for Sterling to be the executioner.
- Kaman: Chris had a normal game tonight, by all means. 25 and 9. What we have come to expect. One problem. He was guarded by freaking Juwan Howard!! No disrespect to Juwan, but Chris could have had 40 tonight. I can back that up because he had only 9 in the first half, when he is normally strongest. If he had exploded against Howard, as he should have, he could have had 20 in the first half, maybe more.
- Rebounding: Kaman had 9, Camby had 11 for LAC. For Portland, however, Pendergraph had 14, Juwan Howard had 9, and Roy had 7. Portland won the overall battle, 40-33(12-7 offensive), despite not having anyone over 6'9" in height.
- Why I Don't Get It: The Clippers beat the Boston Celtics, but lost to the aformentioned, depleted Blazer team. Chris Kaman and DJ topped Kendrick Perkins, Kevin Garnett, and Rasheed Wallace, but lost to a front line of Juwan Howard, Jeff Pendergraph, and Dante Cunningham. I dont get it. I just don't understand how this happens. How do you beat a team with Garnett, Rondo, Perkins, Ray Allen, and Rasheed Wallace but lose majorly to a team with Brandon Roy, Juwan Howard, Martell Webster, Steve Blake, and Jeff Pendergraph. Do you get it? I don't.
- Effort and Motivation: The only half-reasonable explanation I can come up with is a lack of purpose, reason to play ball. When we played the Celts, it was a challenge, a way to prove ourselves, while tonight's game was, supposedly, an easy win. Versus Boston, we won. Against Portland, we went, "oh, easy game", and lost. Motivation is another huge part. If a team is playing without passion, then a coach's job should be to motivate them. I said at halftime, If John Lucas Talks at halftime, we win. If Dun talks, we lose. Lucas brings to the table an energy, a passion that normally is a huge plus, but with a player like Baron Davis... it's a priceless asset.
Find the boxscore here
Get Portland's perspective at BlazersEdge
And in case you hadn't figured it out, I'm mad. I'm sure I'm not alone, too.