Big fan of the site, not a regular poster. Here are my thoughts.
Brilliant game. Steve Nash, as unstoppable as he is, cannot carry his team into the second round without solid support offensively. We showed tonight, that we have the confidence, the offensive firepower, and the defensive capability to shut down the supporting cast in this match up. We frustrated the heck out of Amare, and though we did at times have some trouble closing out beyond the arch our backcourt showed its grit.
Defense wins championships, and though it may be a long shot to propose that this team can make it to the finals it is fair IMO to propose that this series is already coming to a close. We've got them on their heels, and behind the defensive capabilities of Batum, and Camby as well as the offense of Aldridge and Miller we'll show the league that this is a team game, and only as a team will wins come.
Miller has solidified himself as a local hero to fans of the Blazers in recent months, and tonight was no different. He distributed when he needed to and scored when he needed to, and as always he proved himself to be clutch at the foul line. As we all know, JudgeDridge's confidence does tend to waver, but with the supporting cast performing as it did tonight, and the pressure of the opening win released, I see his game improving, in terms of efficiency, dramatically in the coming week, and a more consistent, relaxed PF emerging. The bench, though, is vital to this proposition.
As we all know, Jerryd is a monster when he has his confidence, and tonight he was King Kong. I foresee more driving, and fewer jump shots for him in the near future as a result. This in combination with the streaky offense and lock down defense of Martell Webster will push us over the boarder into Texas for the second round. There is only one question remained to be answered.
Will Rudy Fernandez show us what he is truly capable of? In my mind the remainder of the series may hinge on the comparative performance of Rudy to the Phoenix bench. Though our two major bench role players bailed him out tonight, I'm still looking to Rudy to regain his confidence and provide the creativity, and spark that we will need when we inevitably reach a stalwart. Especially on our home court noone has the potential to sway the crowd like he does.
P.S. Channing Frye, having lost confidence in his team to finish strongly, will play poorly for the rest of the series.