Blazers Win! Blazers Win!
Tell 'em what them won, Lao.
They won a glidepath to the Northwest Division Championship and home court in Round 1 of the NBA Playoffs.
It works like this -- current standings:
Utah has us on tiebreaks and is on an 11-game win streak. But they have an incredibly brutal schedule left, with 5 more road than home games, mostly against playoff teams. And their home games don't offer them a lot of rest either. Looking at their schedule, I predict they go 8-11 the rest of the way. But let's say with Deron Williams they exceed expectations and finish 10-9. That's still only 50-32.
Denver has more of a creampuff schedule with 3 more home games than road games. But they have been losing lately, with 3 wins in their last ten and 3 straight losses (including losing to the Kings, a team the Blazers can spot 20 anywhere on earth -- maybe it's all those threes). And they trail the Blazers by two in the pivotal loss column. I predict 11-6, but could see 12-5. That still leaves the Nuggets at 52-30.
Portland has many of its key games down the stretch at home. This includes games against Denver and Utah. Seeing how we've handled business lately at the RG, especially against the best, if the Blazers continue on anywhere near the same pace, we are looking at 14-5 down the stretch. Call me a homer. Okay, 13-6. Still, that is 53-29.
The Trailblazers have worked hard night in and night out to put the team in this position. Hopefully, we can capitalize with a Division title and guaranteed home court in at least the first round. This team is in position to define it's own destiny.
Get healthy, Blazers. This could be a looong season!