Well, everything I read on the blogs and the Twitter and what-have-you was that the Suns were seriously disappointed in/furious about/despondent over what seemed to have been extremely poor preparation for Game 1. They just weren’t ready to play this Blazers squad, and they treated it like it was any other game. I know every team is required to talk about how playoff games are just like any other game, but let’s be honest; they’re not. Everything out there was about the Suns putting in hours of extra practice and shooting and film time and et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.
Thus far, it seems to be paying off. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not beginning to suggest that this game is anywhere near over. But thus far, the Suns have been playing exactly the game they should have been playing in Game 1. Through the first two quarters, the Suns are shooting 51.2% (though only 30% from 3 [and doesn't it seem like they've shot better than that from 3?]). They’ve gotten to the line for 18 free throws (aggressiveness, baby!) to Portland’s 16. They’re outrebounding the Blazers 22-15. They’ve out-assisted them 15-5. They’re playing their own game, rather than playing Portland’s game. I thought it wasn’t possible, but it’s happening.
The biggest key so far (if you ask me)? Getting Batum in early foul trouble. Blazed called it the other day; that guy is good. He’s the only Blazer who’s a plus for the first half in the plus/minus column (at +1). Without his disruptive ass out there, the Suns have been able to do their thing offensively.
Also, I have 2 questions that maybe some of you Blazer peeps out there can answer for me (or anybody that knows the answers to these):
1. Why in the hell did it seem like Marcus Camby was the #1 option on offense in the first quarter? He’s not a scorer. He knocks down the occasional top-of-the-key J, but that’s about it. He took 6 shots in the first quarter (and 9 total in the first half). LMA took 3 shots in the half. Three.
2. Why does Rudy suck? He’s one of the Blazers I’d like to like. He was o-1 in the first half. He sucks. Why is that?
Alright, so we’ll see what happens in the second half. Don’t be sad yet, Blazer fans (actually, don’t be sad at all. You’ve already sharked home-court advantage)…the Suns have made a habit of turning their own big leads into small ones. See you in 12…