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Archive for November 25th, 2008

Trail Blazers Timberwolves BasketballNate McMillan is having a hard time breathing these days.

Nate’s caught that nasty winter bug that’s been going around (I can relate) and was popping throat lozenges like a madman before the game. I’m not sure if he’s breathing any easier after watching the Sacramento Kings – the injury riddled and five-whole-wins Sacramento Kings – come into Portland’s house and basically push them around.

On a night when the Chicago Bulls used a last second shot from Larry Hughes to beat Utah – at Utah – the Blazers could have been the second upset of the night.

They dodged a Sac-town bullet.

Greg Oden didn’t dazzle, even though Brandon Roy certainly did. Yet if McMillan was handing out game balls afterwards, the one and only should have gone to Joel Przybilla. Peep the statline: 10 points, 12 rebounds and 2 blocks in roughly 28 minutes. Oden may have got the start, but Przybilla finished and he finished strong.

As one faithful reader commented to me last week, “it’s like having a set-up man and closer in baseball.”

We know who was who versus the Kings.

It’s hard to argue with McMillan’s decision to start Oden. As he said before Portland hosted Sacramento, “he wasn’t going to come off the bench the whole season.” Maybe so. But on Monday night at the Rose Garden, Przybilla gave McMillan every reason to keep Greg on the bench and his playing time to a minimum.

That’s just Joel being Joel.

Guess you could say he was a breath of fresh air.

pic via: daylife.

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