Last time I checked the Portland finished the 2013-2014 NBA regular season with a 54-28 record, one identical to the Western Conference #4 seed Houston. With that in mind Sunday’s 122-120 OT victory by the visiting Blazers would not rank amongst the most glaring upsets in recent memory, but it does seem there’s one set observers who insist on viewing the series with a Rockets-centric POV. In the words of Willamette Week’s Janet Weiss — perhaps best known to some of you as the drum virtuoso from Quasi/Sleater-Kinney/Jicks/Wild Flag/Drumgasm (do I really need to go on?) —- “If you’d been watching (TNT’s “Inside The NBA”) with the sound off, you might think Houston the victor.”
The Inside the NBA crew can’t seem to take Portland’s humble, unassuming players very seriously. The highlights were primarily of Houston. Harden makes a three. Dwight gets the rebound and slams a commanding put-back. Patrick Beverley skips down the sideline after receiving a flagrant foul. Aldridge, Lillard and Matthews each receive a little screen time, but most of the TNT post game show talks about the Houston Rockets.
But for Portland fans who’ve followed this Blazers team, the lack of ego and flash is a source of pride. We might not appreciate Shaquille O’Neal referring to Robin Lopez as “barbecue chicken,” but the fact that Aldridge and Lillard are the first teammates to score 45 and 30 in a playoff game since Jordan and Pippen in 1992 reaffirms our faith in this team.