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We thought Kobe would live forever

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Danny Marang and Tara Bowen-Biggs try to make sense of a tough weekend. We also talk about Damian Lillard’s stellar play and other players stepping up.

Portland Trail Blazers v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Robert Mora/NBAE via Getty Images

On this week’s episode we remember Kobe Bryant, our own memories of him, stories that we’ll never forget and what a perfect villain he was for Portland fans. We talk about what he must have meant to players in the league, how his active retirement showed us a different side of him, and wonder who in the league plays with the same passion that Kobe did?

Then we talk about the amazing week Damian Lillard just had, how the ball seems to be moving around more, what we saw from Trevor Ariza and how Gary Trent Jr has made the most of extended minutes. All this and more on the latest episode.

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Highlights

5:30 We thought Kobe Bryant would live forever.

16:00 He was such a good foil, such a good villain for Trail Blazers’ fans.

22:15 Post retirement Kobe and the muse cage.

26:45 How players are reacting to his death. There are two different generations who had different relationships with Kobe. There are the guys who came in the league shortly after he did, and then there are the players who watched him play when they were young.

32:15 Kobe stories: Kobe taking away his teammates’ Kobe shoes because they didn’t deserve to wear them and also Kobe walking out on practice after calling his teammates soft “like Charmin”.

35:00 Who are the players who hate their opponents as much as Bryant ever did?

37:00 Blazers go to Staples Center for the Lakers first game back.

38:45 Damian Lillard’s incredible week.

42:25 Why does it seem like there has been more ball movement but when you look up the stats and they are not passing it more? Damian is driving and getting people to collapse on him and then making precision passes back out. Two behind the back passes! Two!

47:00 Hassan Whiteside has been contributing lately and is clicking with Lillard. He was the most physical he has been all year in the Indiana game. He was dunking all over guys which we’ve really been waiting for.

54:30 How is Ariza fitting in? He’s a pros pro. Like Carmelo Anthony, he just knows what to do. He seems like he’s going to be able to make quick decisions because he’s been doing it for so long. Ariza doesn’t overthink.

57:00 Comparing Ariza to Al-Farouq Aminu.

59:00 Are the Blazers going to play defense again?

62:00 Gary Trent Jr has been really useful and is taking advantage of the opportunity he’s been given to play. He’s been given tons of space to catch and shoot and he’s finishing. He’s also been making some plays.

1:06 :00 Anfernee Simons can slow down time when he’s gliding to the rim.

1:08:00 Listener Questions: @IllKrill What if Whiteside is not traded? How will the Blazers get better around Dame for the coming years?

1:11:00 @williamsstan14 How do you think Whiteside handles it if he doesn’t get traded and Nurk starts taking over his spot little by little. Late game situations etc.. Clearly Nurk is a better all around player especially with this team. He is also beloved by his teammates and his influence is missed

1:17:30 @C_Blake05 If Dame were to hypothetically approach 81 points at staples in a few nights, would you expect him to stop short of 81, or would he try to pass Kobe? ( Of course assuming the game is out of hand)