Wednesday, November 30, 2005

White Whale, Thy Name is Chalupa.

Way to go A.I. "The Answer" did his assistant coach Maurice Cheeks a solid last night by playing 44 minutes and scoring 38 points in an 83-107 rout of the road weary Blazers last night in Liberty City. Jason "Marc Ivaroni is definitely going to be the new coach" Quick's story about assistant coach Cheeks downplayed the significance of the game, and rightfully so. Cheeks ended up getting his dream job, "coaching" in the city he played and having the luxury of never having to come up with an offensive game plan, something that really cut into his singing lessons in Portland. For Blazer fans, it was yet another game that the offense was unable to breach the century mark. I'm not sure if a team has ever gone the whole season in the shot clock era without scoring a C-note, but it looks like the Blazers are dead set at trying. The Blazers had 72 shots, compared to 94 for the Sixers. That hurts. Hell, the Blazers only made 5 more shots than Iverson took, no wonder they haven't reached 100 yet.

It's become apparent that when Darius struggles to score, as he did last night, the Blazers are going to get waxed. Without a solid third scoring option, it's going to be next to impossible to outscore opponents, which I've been told is important. The Blazers and the Sixers had almost the same field goal percentage last night (44.4 to 44.7) but when to take 22 fewer shots, you're not going to win unless you shoot 95%. Oh, and did I mention that the Blazers got out rebounded 30-60? Read that again. The Sixers had only 6 fewer OFFENSIVE rebounds than the Blazer had combined. That's. Just. Wrong.

The good news is that Travis Outlaw (who Cheeks so rudely stated was on the chopping block) and Martell Webster are finally getting some significant playing time, playing 19 and 14 minutes respectively. Even Vik got some court time last night, scoring 4 points in what I can only assume was 7 minutes of garbage time. Still good to see some of the young guys get some experience, which is what I thought this season was going to be about.


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