Yeah, you can get all pumped up about it if you want. And of course people are going to not like me raining on their parade, but seriously — let’s take a little more than a superficial look at this one:
- The Suns came into the game as the worst defensive team in the NBA. On average, Phoenix allows 49 percent shooting every night — worst in the league. Still, the Blazers managed to shoot just 44 percent against them but won because they had one of the best efforts in franchise history at the foul line. That’s OK. Nothing wrong with that other than it’s not particularly a sign that things have significantly changed in the way the team is playing.
- Brandon Roy moved better than he has in a while. He actually looked fairly nimble and made it to the basket on several drives. Unfortunately for him, he couldn’t finish, blew a dead-cold layup late in the game and went 5-for-15 from the field.
- Patty Mills was terrific and Paul Allen must have been sitting back in his recliner saying, “Man, I told you so.” Hey — the kid couldn’t even get into a uniform last season and was virtually wasted on the inactive list. Good for him.
- For most of the night, Channing Frye kicked LaMarcus Aldridge’s tail.
- Without Robin Lopez, the Suns are not a good team. Funny how nobody wanted to even mention that Lopez was not in uniform for this game.
- It is an achievement to win without Andre Miller. He’s really a big part of whatever this team does on offense. Is it just me, or did Roy look to be playing with more energy and direction without Miller around?
- This game was listed as a sellout but there appeared to be hundreds of empty seats, in all price ranges.
Other than that, the Trail Blazers were pretty good. And yes, they were losing to lousy teams last week so you have to give them credit for winning a game and putting out a lot of effort. And yes, it pains me to think you have to give them credit for putting out effort — is that what this season has come down to?