Merry Christmas Portland!!
Highlights via Kingsflix:
Stats: 32min 15pts (6-11, 1-3, 2-2) 7reb 7ast 2stl 0blk 2TO
Salmons ( Mostly Nice ) -- a little bit of passing, a little bit of open court defense, but individually ineffective in the first half. And in fact even took a while to get going in the second half -- dare I say at one point I was actually thinking "where is Outlaw?" (what a team!). And yet if you look up you will see John is one of the leading vote getters for guy who made this win happen. How'd that happen? Well, John had 2pts 3reb 2ast at halftime. You could have said he was playing well rounded ball only in that he wasn't doing terribly much of anything. And he didn't even hit his first shot of the 2nd half until halfway through the third quarter. But once he did his whole game opened up, and he would notch 13pts 4rebs and 5ast from that point on out, playing the latter stages of this one like the star he has always known he is. Even played well enough to keep Outlaw on the bench, and if this one had gone to overtime he could have threatened a triple double.
Stats: 23min 10pts (4-7, 0-0, 2-2) 3reb 2ast 1stl 1blk 1TO
Johnson ( Sorta Nice ) -- got the surprise start at PF as TRob must really be out of favor, or maybe the defensive issues are just such a concern that matching him against Aldridge seemed futile. In any case, JJ drew the task, and really aquitted himself pretty well all thigns considered. Had a wild drive and hook on the move for an early score, and did most of hsi scoring at the rim, running the floor, although did hit another long jumper in the third -- improvement or hot streak, that thing defintely looks better. Got called for an offensive foul in the early third when he came flying in for a huge folow dunk and pushed off Hickson's shoulder to get the height. Giving up size of course, but while Aldridge did score against him, there was never any rhythm or real impact to it as Johnson consistently challenged. No glasswork as a PF however as boarding became another one of those little details we were able to gloss over just by passing the ball and hitting all our shots.
Stats: 21min 10pts (5-9, 0-0, 0-2) 6reb 2ast 1stl 0blk 3TO
Thompson ( Slightly Nice ) -- got off to the fast start givinig us exactly the game you expected we'd need him playing without Cuz. Was giving all the solid early offense, the midrange jumpers, the little hooks. Meat and potatoes stuff, and our best early player. Then he got into minor foul trouble, again, and it changed the course of the game for him. Left at the end fo the first quarter with 2 fouls, did not return until after half. And while he immediately hit a tough spinning shot off the glass to start the half, that was pretty much it. Went quiet for the remainder of the quarter, and the backups again came in and made hsi return unnecessary. As it turns out when you shoot 55.6% you don't actually need a big game from JT to anchor you afterall.
Thornton ( ) -- in progress...
Note: 12/27/2012 -- just noticed I never finished these Christmas Eve. If I can scorunge up my notes and flog my memory a bit I'll try to finihs them in brief ratehr than leave them incomplete.