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Wednesday NBA grades: It’s LaMarcus Aldridge’s world and the Rockets have to live in it

Apr 24, 2014, 2:48 AM EDT

Portland Trail Blazers v Houston Rockets - Game Two Getty Images

Our quick look around the NBA, or what you missed while thinking some of those big local television contracts in the NBA may not be working out so well

source:  LaMarcus Aldridge, Portland Trail Blazers. He has 89 points, 26 rebounds and five blocks in two games — Houston has absolutely no answer for Aldridge. None. And the Rockets are down 2-0 because of it. Wednesday night Aldridge had 43 points on 18-of-28 shooting. Houston didn’t double Aldridge much, which has been a problem as Aldridge can get to the rim but he also hit 13-of-19 from the midrange Wednesday — not many players should make a living from the midrange but Aldridge can and he is torching the Rockets from there. He’s also getting help from his teammates and Portland suddenly looks like a team bound for the second round.

source:   Al Jefferson, Charlotte Bobcats. This man is just gutting it out. He had to leave in the first quarter to go back to the locker room and get some treatment on his sprained plantar facia — and he still played 40 minutes on the night. He’s not the same (18 points on 23 shots), he’s getting exposed on defense, but the Bobcats’ best player is fighting to stay on the court. It’s as good an effort as anyone is putting out in these playoffs.

source:   San Antonio Spurs. San Antonio turned the ball over on 26.2 percent of their possessions Wednesday night — it just didn’t look like the Spurs. They haven’t looked like themselves for about 7 of the 8 quarters in their series with Dallas. In Game 2 Wednesday Tony Parker couldn’t get into the lane (Dallas switched all the pick-and-rolls and it worked), Marco Belinelli is getting torched on defense, Kawhi Leonard has made almost no impact and only Manu Ginobili played well. For a to of teams you might have more questions, but none of us really question if San Antonio can turn it around. But they have not been the better team in this series and the Mavericks now have hope.

  1. seattlesuperchronic - Apr 24, 2014 at 4:18 AM

    What does Aldridge have to do for an A+?

    • eugenesaxe1 - Apr 24, 2014 at 4:25 AM

      Play for a big-market team.

      • innovativethinking87 - Apr 24, 2014 at 9:30 AM

        Let be Kevin Love tho. They’d anoint him the greatest ever by now

    • arrondior - Apr 24, 2014 at 8:58 AM

      Haha you don’t want to know. But the video tape of the act would be worth a lot of $$$$$$$$.

    • flyrocket31 - Apr 24, 2014 at 9:33 AM

      YEA! Jefferson got an A+ and he had 18 points on 23 shots!

    • spthegr8 - Apr 24, 2014 at 10:50 AM

      If L.A. is only getting an “A”. That is one F’d up curve they are grading on. IJS!!!!

  2. tuberippin - Apr 24, 2014 at 5:06 AM

    As good as Jefferson is for playing through a tough injury…Aldridge is flat-out better right now. The grades should be flipped, with Aldridge getting an A+ and Jefferson getting the ol’ “A for effort.”

    • fanofthegame79 - Apr 24, 2014 at 8:08 AM

      Totally agree!

    • kinggw - Apr 24, 2014 at 10:04 AM

      Nobody is arguing that. You have to take into consideration that Jefferson did what he did against a good defensive team, with a chronic injury, while sometimes being doubled or even triple teamed. His efforts kept an otherwise overmatched team in the game until the very end.

      Aldridge had a big night but he did it against a defensively deficient squad who didnt bother to double him that much.

      • sire2334 - Apr 24, 2014 at 11:34 AM

        Nope…Love Jefferson. But L.A. is flat out ballin. Back to back 40 point games in the playoffs…..against D.Howard and crew? Ballin. He’s just not a traditional name. Like it or not the NBA is changing. Look at the Wizards. Regardless of how far they go they’ve made the point of we’re here and Portland is doing the same. Won’t be an easy out for whoever they face in the next round.

  3. campcouch - Apr 24, 2014 at 5:47 AM

    Aldridge is eating Houston’s bigs alive,but I think the writer gave him an A just because he has more talent to work with. Lillard and Batum keep the Rockets honest on D,while Jefferson is stuck with whoever scores that game. Regardless he still should have been graded higher. His numbers are ridiculous.

  4. aboogy123456 - Apr 24, 2014 at 8:38 AM

    Why isn’t McHale adjusting to Aldridge and playing Asik and Howard together? It would hurt the houston offense but it’s not like portland can stop howard either. In the playoffs you have to make coaching adjustments and put the pressure on the other team, so this is disappointing.

    • unxpexted1 - Apr 24, 2014 at 9:55 AM

      He finally started to towards the last six minutes of the game, and it slowed Portland down a little bit. So we’ll see if he stays with that at all.

    • spthegr8 - Apr 24, 2014 at 10:54 AM

      The problem is, their is NO adjustment he can make for L.A. cuz they have NOBODY that can guard him. Scratch that, they have nobody that can even slow him down. He is Houston’s worst nightmare and he is eating them alive.!!!!#LUNCHMEAT!!!!

    • shen90 - Apr 24, 2014 at 12:58 PM

      What on earth are you talking about? In both games Asik and Howard played at same time for considerable stretches. Would prob do more but they keep getting in foul trouble.

    • yomarianob - Apr 24, 2014 at 4:20 PM

      Why did you write this if you didn’t watched the game? He played both Asik and Dwight forma the final minutes of almost every quarter

  5. saint1997 - Apr 24, 2014 at 8:55 AM

    Houston is just biting at every LA pump fake and it’s too easy for him. On another note – I’ve been so impressed by Charlotte. These 2 games have been close and from the coach to Kemba to Al to MKG they’ve all balled their hearts out and if they snag a nice SG in free agency or trade they’ll be sitting pretty for the future (Eric Gordon if he stays healthy?)

    • packergator - Apr 24, 2014 at 9:17 AM

      Though I’d say that Miami’s effort so far has been uneven at best.

  6. packergator - Apr 24, 2014 at 9:19 AM

    Is age catching up to the Spurs? Even if it isn’t, I’d worry about them against a team like the Thunder, who are a bad matchup for them anyway.

  7. bucrightoff - Apr 24, 2014 at 9:27 AM

    What kind of idiot would have drafted Andrea Bargnani over LaMarcus Aldridge? Oh yeah Bryan Colangelo…

    • unxpexted1 - Apr 24, 2014 at 9:57 AM

      What kind of idiot franchise would trade for Andrea Bargnani when they had a chance for LaMarcus Aldridge? Oh yea, the New York Knicks.

      • oregon59 - Apr 24, 2014 at 12:37 PM

        What kind of idiot franchise would trade LA for Tyrus Thomas and Viktor Khryapa, oh yea Chicago.

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