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I have to give the Blazers and coach McMillan credit for how they played the Jazz, at least for this week. I like McMillan. I think he is partially made from the Jerry Sloan cloth. 



QUOTABLE: "I'm motivated to go up against anybody. (Facing) Utah is an added bonus, but there's no bad blood there. Everybody wants to play good against his former team."
- Matthews, after equalling his career high with 30 points against the team for which he played last season.
Wesley Matthews played probably the best that we have seen over the past year and a half. He not only had 30 points on 16 shots but added three rebounds three assists, and four steals.  There was some dissension on the twitter roll last night about the situation on how and why Matthews ended up in Portland. I don't know every detail but the best timeline of the entire situation is Ross Siler's (former beat writer for the Utah Jazz) Twitter timeline which is here. Like he said this morning for theTweet of the Night  
Screen_shot_2010-12-31_at_10.29.15_AM 

Marcus Camby 
I  know  Marcus Camby is not worth nine Million dollars a year for his offense, but his rebounding and defense is another story. He finished with 20 boards, five assists, two steals, and two blocks. He also alters 3-5 shots on any given night. He reminds a lot of Dennis Rodman, "I don't need to score, just give me the freaking rebound". We need a guy like that. 

57 Fouls in one Game. 
The NBA tries very hard to have a unifying goals/rules when it comes to officiating. Sometimes it doesn't crossover to the game very well. The goal is to have a foul called the same way on the same night anywhere in the NBA to make the game "fair". Last night this did not happen. There were a total of 55 fouls calls and two techs.  Divide that by 48 minutes and you get a 1.18 fouls per minute during the game. Which means that on average the clock was stopped every other possession last night on a foul call. The calls were going against both teams and were horrible for both teams. Just saying the pace was so freaking slow not only because of the Blazers, but because of the refs. I know there are grind it out nights in the NBA but last night was not "fair" to either team. 

Deron Williams.  
In the Month of December Deron Williams is averaging only 8.7 assists per game.He only has one double digit assist game in the past five(Cleveland 10). His points are @ 23. I think part of this is due to all of the switching around and partly because, well, we are playing very inconsistent. 

Gordon Hayward- He is finding a way to get to the free throw line 4-6 last night. Aggression towards going to the hole. I am glad that he is learning this skill much easier than Cj Miles. I think this skill alone, if he can keep it up, will get him playing time.

Paul Millsap- in 2008 he went on a streak of 19 straight double-doubles. He had 5 rebounds last night, mostly because Camby was eating everything that even looked like glass, and partially because I think he is tired/injured. I have no factual back up for this theory other than the numbers this year. He is averaging 7.9 rebounds a game which is nowhere near enough for his position and the amount of playing time he gets. I somehow thought that his numbers would increase this year and so far they have not.
 
Stat of the Night-
18 turnovers by the Utah Jazz- Have to the Blazers credit here. 

Highlight of the Night 
Pretty Obvious Here  


Jerry Sloan's thoughts (Video) courtesy of the Trib.

Bust-a-Bucket's Thoughts