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NBA Playoffs Blazers Suns Game 5: Suns no longer messing around, we think, maybe

Apr 27, 2010, 1:06 AM EDT

You know what so many playoff series come down to? Inevitabilities. It’s inevitable that Denver’s chaotic group of misfit toys will all turn around and fire on themselves at some point. It’s inevitable that the Celtics’ age will become a non-cliche’d, genuine liability against the brand new supercomputer of the moment. It’s inevitable that the Suns’ inability to produce stops in key situations will be their downfall.

It’s also, as the Portland Trail Blazers found out tonight in their 107-88 loss to the Phoenix Suns, inevitable that the Suns offense will have a night where it just completely overwhelms you. Tonight was the night that inevitability came home to roost for the Blazers.

Check out the box score. It’s all there.

Steve Nash and Amar’e Stoudemire didn’t have playoff career highs. But moreso than any game in this series, the pick and roll was there. They fronted, Amar’e feigned. They posted, he spun. They trapped Nash, he lobbed. And when that component opens up, you adjust. Which means somewhere, someone is open on the perimeter. Channing Frye? Jared Dudley? They were someone tonight.

Frye was due for a game like this, and lit it up. Drive and dish catch and shoots. Transition trailer. Double perimeter rotation. Open, good looks, with a Blazers team that was too busy trying to understand why it was running so hard to understand where it should be running. And with Brandon Roy looking like a guy who had knee surgery 10 days ago, the Blazers now face an elimination game in Portland.

You have to accept a game like this. It’s going to happen under the circumstances the Blazers are operating. But if they want to win this series, they’d better hope it’s the last one.

  1. Tony Dogs - Apr 27, 2010 at 11:52 AM

    “It’s inevitable that the Suns’ inability to produce stops in key situations will be their downfall. ”
    And it’s inevitable that the Suns improved defensive efforts will be ignored. Yes, their offense clicked very well in game five. But that’s also ignoring the their defense. Last night their defense did very well…or did you miss the 18-4 run they went on to close out the first quarter when they trailed the Blazers by 14?

  2. SunsFan - Apr 27, 2010 at 12:07 PM

    Thank you Tony Dogs!
    It seems very few members of the media understand the Suns. Their defense has been very good this season. I can understand that their offense gets more attention but these guys need to start respecting this team’s defense.

  3. DBCooper - Apr 27, 2010 at 12:59 PM

    Neither team should get out of the first round. Unfortunately one of them must advance. I’m from Portland & am a big Blazer fan, but the Suns aren’t that good & the Blazers, while better, are decimated by injuries. I hope they win, but it really doesn’t matter.
    Go Blazers!

  4. Eliott - Apr 27, 2010 at 1:47 PM

    What a sad world you live in, DBCooper.
    I guess I might be the same way if I was stuck in Portland, though.
    There’s ALWAYS an excuse with you guys. If there’s someone injured, that’s the reason for a loss. If Roy is back, it’s because he just got back, or isn’t starting. Or the refs are ignoring you. Or Stern has it rigged. Give it a rest.
    Yeah, two 50+ winning teams ‘aren’t that good’. I guess if you had more than one sports team, or more than 5 channels on your TV, you might be able to realize what an idiotic statement that is.
    If we’re going that far, then the Lakers shouldn’t be in there, because their regular season fizzled out near the end. Or for that matter, 3/4 of the Eastern Conference shouldn’t have even made the playoffs.
    You go ahead and aimlessly root for your ‘team’, not that it matters.

  5. GMan - Apr 27, 2010 at 2:17 PM

    Eliott – DBCooper has a point. I like the Blazers (I also live in Portland) . It’s been fun watching the Blazers make the playoffs despite the injurys. It’s been fun watching both the Suns and Blazers battle it out in the first round. It’s been a while since either of these teams have gone deep into the playoffs.
    I applaud DBCooper for aimlessly rooting for his team. Every fan – should root for his home town. It looks like Phoenix will probably win this series. As for me, after this, I am rooting for any team that is playing against the Lakers. I know in your heart – if you are a true Suns fan…you feel the same way.

  6. portland mike - Apr 27, 2010 at 2:26 PM

    Hey, guys, let’s call ‘em the way we see ‘em. Just about everyone in the NBA makes it to the playoffs. The teams that don’t are SOOO bad that they probably should be part of a minor league, like triple A in baseball. That being said, the first round of the playoffs is supposed to be attrition time. I just moved to Portland last summer. I’ve watched the Blazers stumble through a near record-breaking number and severity of injuries, and STILL make the playoffs. Let’s give them credit for doing as well as they did. Sure, there’s only one team in town, but a lot of cities have only one team. Let us root for our one team, and be proud of their record. And, like Chicago, wait for “next year.”

  7. Anonymous - Apr 27, 2010 at 2:36 PM

    As a true Suns fan, I am rooting for any team that is playing against the Lakers. I am also rooting against any team that is playing against the Spurs!
    Also, can’t miss this opportunity to give props to the Blazers. They have done an outstanding job in a season that would have melted down most teams. Lots of credit to Nate McMillan for that!

  8. LogicMan - Apr 27, 2010 at 6:01 PM

    The Suns were 22nd in defense last year.
    The Suns were 12th in defense this year.
    Phoenix has to get some credit for improving their defense.
    Cheers

  9. Eliott - Apr 27, 2010 at 6:25 PM

    ABSOLUTELY, GMan. My core values system would be rocked if I didn’t root against the Lakers at any possible moment. That being said…regardless of which team wins the series, do you really think the winner of this series has zero chance going forward in the playoffs? They’re 50+ win teams. The gap between 1st & 8th seed were as small as I’ve seen them in years…and Oklahoma’s series against the Lakers has proven the parity displayed this year.
    Sorry guys, didn’t mean to dig at your city. I actually love Portland…but I had to display allegiances during war :)

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