Suns-Trail Blazers: Around the nation April 19

After the Portland Trail Blazers’ shocking Game 1 upset of the Phoenix Suns, here’s what’s being said around the nation:

  • On ESPN’s Daily Dime, John Hollinger talks about the spectacular performances from veterans on a young Portland team and how they might be able to steal the series: “It’s common to think of the Portland Trail Blazers as a young team, and for the most part they still are. But Sunday, a pair of old geezers with a combined age of 70 — 36-year-old Marcus Camby and 34-year-old Andre Miller — helped the Blazers to a 105-100 Game 1 upset of Phoenix, providing the first genuine drama of the 2010 playoffs.”
  • At our TrueHoop sister blog Portland Roundball Society, Andrew R. Tonry recaps some Game 1 points and wonders if the ridiculous amount of injuries the Trail Blazers have faced has actually benefited the team’s confidence: “What the Phoenix Suns were subjected to Sunday night was the silver lining of the Blazers’ injury-plagued season. Due in large part to their almost freakish and unending misfortune, Portland were prepared to play without their All-Star, Brandon Roy. In fact, they were confident.”
  • The Arizona Republic‘s Dan Bickley tastes bitter playoff disappointment again in Phoenix and writes that the Suns aren’t being aggressive enough: “The Suns shot only two free throws in the first half, on a gift call awarded to Nash, revealing a team that was settling for perimeter jump shots and not attacking the basket.”
  • Like the rest of the nation, The Arizona Republic‘s Paul Coro thinks the Suns need a greater contribution from Amare Stoudemire.
  • Geoffrey C. Arnold of The Oregonian suggests the Trail Blazers may now be the favorite to win the series after being the only team in the playoffs this year to win Game 1 on the road and says Portland need not change its ways, but the Suns better.
  • At Bright Side of the Sun, Seth Pollack won’t blame the referees for the Suns’ Game 1 loss, but says the Trail Blazers benefited from the physical play that the men in stripes allowed: “I will have to re-watch the game, but it on first blush it also seems that Portland benefited from the way the game was called. Interior contact was being allowed while the game was being called tight outside of the paint. I don’t want to fall into the ‘blame the refs’ trap — especially without watching the game — but there are certainly impacts to the way games are called. But good teams adjust and the Suns didn’t tonight.”
  • Kevin Pelton of Basketball Prospectus thinks Jarron Collins starting actually hurts the Suns‘ ability to start hot on offense, despite what it does for the rotation.
  • CBS Sports’ Ken Berger makes a point that this series should shine a light on how good of a job Kevin Pritchard, the embattled Blazers GM, and Tom Penn, the recently fired former VP of basketball operations, have done in stockpiling talent.

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