Blogtable: Flukes and real wins

Each week, we’ll ask our stable of scribes across the globe to weigh in on the three most important NBA topics of the day — and then give you a chance to step on the scale, too, in the comments below.


BLOGTABLE: Indiana awakening? | Game 1 illusion or harbinger | Grading the Grizz’s chances



VIDEO: TNT’s Marty Snider looks ahead to the Blazers-Rockets in Game 2 on Wednesday in Houston

> Playoff-opening win that’s more likely a harbinger: the Warriors in L.A. or the Blazers in Houston? Why?

Steve Aschburner, NBA.com: Look at Mr. Blogtable, dropping words like “harbinger.” OK, I’ll play along: You mean precursor, foreboder and bellwether of what we can expect as each series plays out? Forced to choose, I’ll go with Portland. The Clippers already have fired back against Golden State, in a big way. Their talent level is superior, when accounting for both ends, and L.A. has been seen as a legit contender to reach The Finals. Few have argued that Houston can go that far. The Rockets’ gap vs. the Blazers is narrow and LaMarcus Aldridge might just prove he’s better than both Blake Griffin and Kevin Love among elite power forwards by the time these playoffs end. I still don’t think either the Warriors or the Blazers will advance, but as far as putting the bigger scare into its foe and possibly pulling off the upset, yeah, gimme Portland.

Fran Blinebury, NBA.comWarriors winning. LaMarcus Aldridge scored 46 points, James Harden missed 20 shots and the Blazers still won by just two points in overtime. That will be tough to repeat three more times. Golden State goes home for next two and Steph Curry hasn’t heated up yet.

Jeff Caplan, NBA.com: Blazers in Houston, no question. The Warriors without Andrew Bogut should not be an even match against the Clippers and I think we saw that in Game 2 with Blake Griffin being allowed to actually play. The Clips are by no means perfect, but this is a team that is getting better the longer they play together. As for Houston, losing that late lead is the same kind of stuff they pulled early in the regular season so that’s a bad sign. Portland has more weapons. Damian Lillard can hang with James Harden, and LaMarcus Aldridge is a far more offensively skilled player than Dwight Howard. Now, this should be a great series, and a long one, but I like the Blazers’ chances. They secured the all-important road split and nobody likes to play at their place no longer named the Rose Garden.

Scott Howard-Cooper, NBA.com: Now you’re forcing a lot of people to look up the definition of harbinger. Anyway, the Blazers in Houston. I don’t think the short-handed Warriors are capable of winning the series, though they probably don’t hate the skepticism. But Portland went in with a real shot against the Rockets. Game 1 was just the affirmation.

John Schuhmann, NBA.com: This is unfair, because we’ve already seen Part 2 of one of these movies. But Portland’s Game 1 win in Houston could certainly foreshadow the rest of the series, because LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard will continue to be tough matchups for the Rockets, especially if Patrick Beverley isn’t 100 percent. If they choose to double-team Aldridge, Portland’s shooters will get better looks. If they choose to use Omer Asik more, their own offense will suffer. James Harden will play better, but Houston’s defense might not.

Sekou Smith, NBA.com: I’m going with the Blazers in Houston. The 4-5 matchup on both sides of the conference divide in a given year always seem to provide a pretty fair fight. But this one has some serious issues for the Rockets to deal with in LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard. After fighting the good fight for Dwight Howard the past couple of years, I’m starting to agree with the masses (well, the talking heads at TNT and NBA TV) that he’s no longer the force of nature he was earlier in his career. And if he’s not, that means the Rockets don’t have two stars that can match the Blazers’ two stars.

Lang Whitaker, NBA.com All Ball Blog: I feel like the Blazers in Houston was the truer picture of what that series could be. Mainly because the Blazers/Rockets Game 1 was both teams at the fullest of their powers. We were one extra-session Harden jumper from this game going into infinite overtimes. But to me that opening Clippers/Warriors game was one of the worst games I’ve seen Los Angeles play in the last few weeks. Blake Griffin was in foul trouble throughout (he finished with 16 points in 19 minutes) and how often do you see Chris Paul with a 4:3 assist-to-turnover ratio? Even with all that, the Clips still were in the game down the stretch and nearly pulled off the win.


VIDEO: The Inside the NBA crew examines Golden State’s problems in Game 2

12 Comments

  1. Jay says:

    Did anyone see this one coming… Grizz! Clips should be up 3-0 as game 1 was a travesty by the NBA ref’s…

  2. Once again, the CLIPPERS showed the reason why THEY BELONG TO GO TO ROUND 2 and GOLDEN STATE? Well, maybe nextseason.BLAKE GRIFFIN (32PTS, 9 REBS), STIFLIN D and TIMELY 3 PT. SHOOTING from CP3. STEPHEN CURRY? 22PTS. GOOD, BUT 2 LITTLE, 2 LATE.ONE DOWN, ONE MORE 2 GO.WITH THAT BEING SAID, THE CLIPPER SHIP,(A.K.A.LOB CITY) SAILIN ON 2 ROUND 2 WITH THIS SERIES ABOUT OVER. Keep your HEAD in the GAME, GRIFFIN.WAY 2 TIGHTEN UP ON DEM BOARDS,FELLAS! NEXT OPPONENT, PLEEZE COME ON DOWN!

  3. colin says:

    portland gonna sweeeeep

  4. Rich says:

    At this point, the most valid win is the Dallas over Spurs. They did it with in their regular style of play and no big performance anomalies. The Blazers situation is a fluke because LaMarcus is just hot right now. 40 points and shooting .55 – .65 from the field is not sustainable for him. He is .45 from the field for the season.

  5. feelazone says:

    The most impressive was portland win over Houston. GSW was just lucky Clippers play was so much ugly in game 1 cuz of BGs foul trouble and CP3s TOs. And if a correct call was done, Clippers are now 2-0. In HOU vs POR, if correct call was done, it was bot sure if howard can make FTs, unlike in LAC vs GSW, CP3 can make FTs. LAC in 5. HOU/POR in 7, icant make bet on this HOU-POR

  6. okc2014 says:

    I still think Houston will win the series. The “harbinger” to me is the Wizards beating the Bulls.

  7. West says:

    Golden State messed up losing by such a big margin. They gave the Clips new life. Due to that travesty in game 1 Griffin won’t be in foul trouble again for the rest of the series. Clips in 6.

    Houston has no answer for LA. Thanks to his range Howard and can’t check him. And if Beverly is less than 100% no one can deal with Lillard. Harden is a volume shooter who depends on trips to the line. Those trips are not as reliable in the playoffs. Portland in 6.

  8. Shawn says:

    Clippers are awesome, but like it was stated–Curry hasn’t even heated up–he did how ever get fired up in game 2. Expect a difference maker for the rest of the games. There will be a game 7 indeed–FAITH!

    • TOO LITTLE, TOO LATE, SHAWN! CLIPPERS got dis one IN THE BAG! THE DIFFERENCE MAKER: BIG TIME D, OWNING DEM BOARDS, LOW on the turnovers, TIMELY 3 PT. SHOOTING,AND MY MAN BLAKE, BEING BULLISH YET ONCE AGAIN.NO NEED DENYING THE OBVIOUS GO CLIPS!

  9. BigCeez says:

    Are we completely discrediting or simply forgetting the Memphis win in OKC?

  10. Salve says:

    Portland will take in 7. Nicolas Batum, Wesley matthews and ROLO are just way to much for Houston. Plus they will probably go after Hacka-Howard again. James Harden is to beat and beverly is just Jumping up and down like a crazy man. Houston thinks they are intimidating. But really they are the ones fearing RIP CITY!

  11. jimbo says:

    Portland in 7 and Clippers in 6. Clippers are too big and too fast for GS. Portland looks focused and Aldridge looks ready to take control. If he does, Portland will win in 7, possibly 6.