Trail Blazers Press Release

15 Most Important Games Of The Season: Bay Area Breakthrough

08/19/10
  1. Written by: trailblazers  / avg. rating: 5.0


    It's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of an NBA season. There's little time for reflection when the focus is always on the next game.

    With the 2009-2010 season behind us, now is a good time to count down the 15 games that shaped the season and, possibly, the future of the franchise. Game No. 8: Bay Area Breakthrough written by Aaron Grossman.


    Links: Game Recap || Game Quotes || Photo Gallery

    Some might say it was a long time coming for the Trail Blazers. Others may point to style of play as the foremost explanation for Portland’s woes on the East Bay. Whatever the case, the Trail Blazers finally broke through on this night – or at least when it counted.

    Trailing, 96-83, entering the fourth quarter, the game had all the makings of another track meet where Golden State left Portland in the dust. A 13-point deficit despite Brandon Roy's masterful play (38 points) in the first 36 minutes had to make Trail Blazers fans wonder if the hardwood at ORACLE Arena simply had their team running uphill.



    “It was one of those games where I was just hoopin’,’’ said Roy, who finished the contest with a game-high 41 points (14-22 FG). “That’s what I said to the guys on the bench: ‘This is one of those games where you just have to hoop.’ You know? Because (Golden State) makes it so funky.”

    But the Warriors, whose “funky” offensive style made them the league’s second-highest scoring team in 2009-10, connected on just three of 14 shots from the field in the fourth quarter in scoring only nine points. Nine points – tied for the fewest in the final frame by any Trail Blazers opponent in team history.

    On the other end of the floor, LaMarcus Aldridge was the model of Portland’s resiliency. Without a field goal entering the fourth quarter (0-7), Aldridge was an unlikely hero. Yet the 6-11 power forward led the drive, outscoring the opposition in the final period on his own by counting 10 of Portland’s 27 fourth-quarter points.

    The Trail Blazers spurred their run by dominating the glass, grabbing a startling 18-5 margin (7-0 offensive) in the final 12 minutes. Portland gained an 11-0 advantage in second chance scoring in the decisive period.

    “It’s over,’’ a smiling coach Nate McMillan said after the game. Portland’s nine-game losing streak in Oakland snapped – just like that.

    The Trail Blazers rode the momentum to wins in each of their next three games and seven of the next eight to close the month with a mark of 11-2, the team’s second-best record in March in team history.

    Previous Important Games
    #9 || #10 || #11 || #12 || #13 || #14 || #15

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