Why the Blazers are Struggling Away From Rip City Transcription

I messed up with the labeling of the transcription so after the first Page. The labeling of Dustin and Sage is the opposite of what it’s labeled as

[00:00:00] Dustin: all right, everybody. Welcome to the 258th edition of the holy backward podcast. I am Dustin here in rip city.

[00:00:28] Sage: I drove from Medford, Oregon to Beaverton, Oregon today, and we’re doing a podcast of the same day and, um, you know, my back hurts and, uh, but I’m here. I’m ready to talk about the blazers a week.

[00:00:42] That was, and I created a new build in two K and I’m re I’m really ready to get all the hate messages that I deserve. So I’m ready.

[00:00:51] What was the. Two things. How was your Thanksgiving and what was the best thing you ate over the

[00:00:56] weekend? So [00:01:00] how’s the Thanksgiving. I was, it was cool. Like, um, I made the mashed potatoes by mom made Turkey and stuffing.

[00:01:06] My brother made some really good collard greens with all the ham in the world. Um, so it was, it was cool. We all, we all collaborated to make it fun dinner and it was chill. I really did enjoy it. Um, to answer your second question. I don’t know if my mom listened to two weeks ago when I said we didn’t make dessert.

[00:01:27] Well, that changed a lot. Um, my mom has like these persimmon trees in her yard and. I guess this is the time to harvest them and freeze them. So we made cheesecake for some cheesecake persimmon bread pudding, persimmon brownies. So we were, we were begging up a storm and like, this is the first time we’ve ever baked.

[00:01:50] Like my brother and I were just like, well, we don’t have enough eggs. So let’s just add more for salmon. And it works. [00:02:00] Like he was looking at the wrong recipe and I was looking at the right one. So he doubled the butter and uh, like the wet ingredients. I was like, well, shit, do we have to double those dry too?

[00:02:12] So he did. And we ran out of eggs and we just use persimmon puree to account for three eggs and it turned out great. So it was a very, uh, productive baking, um, uh, Thanksgiving period. How was it? It was good.

[00:02:29] Dustin: Uh, the food we ordered was fantastic. I think the best thing that I ate, I’m going to toot my own horn.

[00:02:39] I think I make some incredible mashed potatoes. So those were, those were probably my favorite. We also got like a cheeseboard wa and then we got some pickles and olives and the crackers and like went to town on those, uh, w hard. So we had a really late Thanksgiving dinner because we were like, no, we a [00:03:00] lot of chiefs.

[00:03:01] So how

[00:03:01] do you make your bash potatoes that sets it apart from other mashed potatoes?

[00:03:06] One, I use red potatoes. I think red is the superior of the mashed potato to leave the skins on. I think the skins have a good texture and they added good taste. And then when you’re making the mashed potatoes, like usually when, when we, when we cook, we try to like cook somewhat healthy and, you know, Not go too heavy on the fattier ingredients, but when it’s Thanksgiving put your milk in, make sure they’re not too runny, like just a little bit of milk, but then like we use Greek yogurt, uh, salt, pepper, cheese, shredded cheese, and don’t skimp on the butter.

[00:03:44] Now. You don’t want it to go like overload. Like you taste as you go and you mash them, you drain them, all that good stuff. And you, you just season a little bit garlic powder as well. And yeah, you just get it to your liking. And I like the masters a little bit, [00:04:00] not super creamy, like a little bit of a texture and in lumps, it’s just, it’s just, uh,

[00:04:05] Sage: do you want, do you want a hint from a recipe for my grandfather?

[00:04:12] Okay. You leave a little bit of the water that you a boil the potatoes then. So get, makes it a little more moist. So my mom was like, leave like a little bit, so you can add so that it can have all the gluten from the potatoes and make it a little more fluffy. So yeah, that that’s a tip. Uh, we, we used a lot of butter.

[00:04:34] Have you ever tried G the clarified butter? No, that’s some real, that’s some real, uh, foodie shit geek. I think it’s clarified butter, but we had this really nice ghee butter. She’s like all the shit I shouldn’t eat because of my lactose intolerance, but it didn’t affect me. It did not affect me once. So

[00:04:56] Dustin: I was backed up black Friday.

[00:04:59] Well, let’s just say that [00:05:00] all the cheese. So, um, you know, did you,

[00:05:03] Sage: did you celebrate black Friday?

[00:05:05] Dustin: Um, online, digitally?

[00:05:08] Sage: Yeah, I. I got my mom a really nice coat. And then I got everybody in the family, a nice, a nice coat for a cold weathers, bro. Like I remember when I was younger, I was like, I wore shorts in December, but now I am, I’m bundled up like a, like a weak, weak, weak person when it comes to cold, bro, like BME on, I was, I was flippers on like, I used to be a fucking menace to society in the cold.

[00:05:42] Now I am just so, so, so soft. Now that old age is a motherfucker

[00:05:48] Dustin: at a few presents I needed to get for, for Olga. And I don’t think any of them really were on only two of them were on, were on discount, a couple, just, they were going to be the same price year round, but [00:06:00] I unfortunately had to work. So I was home alone and uh, like the movie out, like the movie.

[00:06:05] So I woke up. And a piece of pecan pie with whipped cream in a cup of coffee sounded amazing. So I had that for breakfast, become pie was probably the other best thing I had to eat. Um, that was incredible. Still have a little bit left, so I’m thankful for that. And yeah, I just, I did my shopping and I was, I was done by like noon.

[00:06:27] Um, good, good to go. Even got my secret Santa from work. Uh, so yeah, happy that was, was done and went to Austin stadium on Saturday for Oregon, Oregon state. And that

[00:06:41] Sage: quarterback on the beavers has the weirdest throwing motion ever. It looks like a damn, uh, like shortstop.

[00:06:48] Yeah.

[00:06:49] I like your, your ducks. Step on next enough, they let Oregon in the game.

[00:06:56] If they didn’t do dumb shit, like avoid using their good [00:07:00] kicker in the first few quarters of would have been a much different game. Like God damn you guys just like to make it interesting. You don’t want to just wire the wire kick their ass where they have no chance of, I think Anthony Brown is that the quarterback’s name

[00:07:16] probably as

[00:07:16] Dustin: he was, he was great.

[00:07:18] He, this was the game where he was great. Like I’ve watched a few and it was like, oh, he doesn’t look for the easy pass. Like, you know, the, like I’ve watched drew breeze a lot and. Later in his career, drew breeze hit the slant route all the time. Anthony Brown does not look at that slant route. Slaton routes are for, uh, for whim.

[00:07:39] See, he’s trying to, he’s trying to find them did

[00:07:42] Sage: he did on that touchdown. So we did a little bit, but you know, the offensive line protected and had gave them all the time in the world, uh, to your point. Yes. They, they always make it interesting. It is the bane of my sports existence this year. Oddly enough, the game against Ohio state was probably the best [00:08:00] performance from start to finish and it was against their toughest opponent.

[00:08:02] Dustin: So, uh, we’ll see how they play against Utah in kind of a revenge game. It would be awesome to get back to the rose bowl. Once again, that’s always a fun. That was actually my first Oregon, Oregon state game at Autzen. I’ve been to three prior in Corvallis, so it was nice to be there, um, this year. Great weather as always.

[00:08:23] And before we get into the blazers I had why I kept telling you to drive safe. I was on my way back. And it’s about 7 45. I’m like one mile away from my exit off of I five. I have my windows down because I drive an older car and I want the defrost doesn’t work super well. So I keep the windows down. So it airs it out.

[00:08:44] I don’t, it doesn’t fog up. Have my music blaring. When I hear, I hear tires just screeching before I see it, I look in my rear view and I drive this little four-door sedan. This is, this lifted big ass pickup is [00:09:00] right on my ass in the slow lane. Cause I’m getting ready to exit and I’m having to speed up.

[00:09:05] Thankfully there’s nobody around me. He is, uh, swerving left and right. Trying to get control of his vehicle. Finally does a 180 goes up against the barrier. Incomes nose to nose with the car on the far left-hand lane. Thankfully that car in the left hand lane had saw it unfolding and slowed down. So there wasn’t a collision, but had that been in rush hour or more cars, like it would have been a major pile up.

[00:09:33] And I was just thankful that, uh, I didn’t look like anybody got hurt. Uh, you know, I was left unscathed, you know, very fortunately, but it was like slow motion. You see this car coming at you and you don’t, it really does slow down when you get in, in those moments. So, um, always keep your head on a swivel.

[00:09:55] So anytime I hear that you’re making that drive. I’m like be safe. [00:10:00] is a monster. Yeah,

[00:10:02] Sage: I’m abroad. I know that this from Portland to, uh, to, uh, Southern Oregon. I knew it very well now, like. I’ve never really had any close calls on the I five, it’s mostly close calls on like, you know, CB driving because we have other dummies and sometimes I’m a dummy, but you know, even though the blazers sometimes play like dummies, they’re still our team.

[00:10:29] Dustin: Oh, Sage with the transition. I like it. Let’s kick it off with a little good, bad and ugly for the week. That was before I get your good, a quick rundown of what happened for the Portland trailblazers this past week, they went one in three. Um, as they knocked off the Denver nuggets at home one 19 to 100 Damon, CJ looked brilliant together.

[00:10:58] But as [00:11:00] expected Portland goes winless on their three game roads road trip over the Thanksgiving holiday losing 1 25, 1 21 in Sacramento, dropping to Owen to on the regular season against the Kings who were, who were without Rashaun homes and deer and Fox got ejected in the second half. The golden state warriors on black Friday, put Portland away with a huge third quarter run one 18 to 1 0 3 and then just now on Monday evening, the Utah jazz used another third quarter run to put Portland away, defeating our blazers 1 29 to 1 0 7 Sage, the blazers fall two, 10 and 11 on the regular season, which currently puts them in 10th in the Western conference.

[00:11:48] What was your good from that week? That was.

[00:11:54] Sage: So I, you, you know, have this about minutes rotations forever. Now [00:12:00] this season use of Nurk is hit 30 minutes in a game this year. That is my good, the Kings. At that time, I am unprepared for this Alvin Gentry wind with a big lineup of Damien Jones and Marvin Bagley from like, uh, the sixth minute of the third quarter, till the end of the game, it kind of forced our hand to play use of Nurk EJ extra stints because Marvin Bagley had probably his best game of the year up to that point.

[00:12:36] And Damon Jones was just skying over everybody for dunk shadows in this year, little for blocking that shot one of the Damon Jones dunks, but we needed to go big. And for the first time all year, He let use of Nurk is off the, off the bench in the fourth quarter. Hey, I had two fourth quarter stints in this game.

[00:12:57] I know we didn’t win, but to see that he was [00:13:00] willing to actually play the big man made me really happy to see him go to 30 minutes and then. The next game we played use of newer controls, like on 30% of people’s rosters, but I knew that he wasn’t getting anywhere close to 30 and the next game against the warriors not happening, but I wasn’t very happy.

[00:13:19] It’s

[00:13:20] Dustin: not against golden state. Golden state is a team where you have to play five defenders that can switch and switch well, because if there’s even one weak link dream on green and Steve Kerr and Steph Curry are going to expose you. And they, they, they are some of the smartest players and coaches currently in, in the league.

[00:13:43] And it was just impressive watching how they were manipulating Portland to where they wanted to go. And so that’s where it was like, it was good that use of played against Sacramento, but you could tell that they were putting him in pick [00:14:00] and rolls and he’s, he’s not going to be able to go under or over Steph Curry on a screen like.

[00:14:06] CJ. And in Anthony, we’re losing staff in the bathroom. And I that’s, I mean, that’s just how incredible Curry is. That’s not a knock. Yeah.

[00:14:14] But what can you do? He’s 300 pounds and seven feet. He has no chance, but I was very happy to see that Chauncey Billups at least played him 30 minutes in a game where it was beneficial to go big.

[00:14:27] My good for the week. It’s short and sweet. 15 of the next 19 games for Portland are at home.

[00:14:37] Sage: So that means that April it’s all the way. Huh?

[00:14:40] Portland is nine and one at home, which is the second best in the NBA, behind the golden state warriors who are 11. And one, I took an early guest just before this podcast and just kind of played schedule maker.

[00:14:51] I think they win at least 11 of those 12 home games.

[00:14:54] Could you say them out loud to us? Oh, I mean, I’m sorry. I’m making you [00:15:00] read. I’m my bad.

[00:15:03] Dustin: Well, let’s go to. All right. So pistons, probably a dub spurs, a dub Celtics. I’ll give them that. When I think they beat the Clippers and they split the season series with, with Los Angeles.

[00:15:15] Um, you got Minnesota, that’s a dub, probably lose to Phoenix, probably beat Memphis, probably beat Charlotte. I think Brooklyn probably gets us. And then you’ve got two games, uh, not back-to-back, but back-to-back in terms of the schedule, uh, Dallas and Utah, I think they split those. I don’t know which one gets the win, which one gets the loss.

[00:15:35] Um, Atlanta’s probably a victory. Miami seems to give us fit. So I’ll give the heat, the win there. And then you finish off with Cleveland in Sacramento, which I think the wind, both of those. So that’s, that’s probably 11 rules right there. And the road games aren’t much more, uh, winnable. I mean, you’re looking at golden state, Memphis, new Orleans in-laws

[00:15:58] were going to win against the new [00:16:00] Orleans.

[00:16:00] Maybe

[00:16:00] Sage: if Zion might be backed by.

[00:16:02] Dustin: So I don’t believe

[00:16:03] Sage: it, but December 21st, that’s a month back.

[00:16:10] Dustin: I can’t wait to watch herb Jones on one of our cards,

[00:16:13] Sage: either way. You’re looking at Portland being 11 wins, maybe a road victory in there. You’re looking at 21 in 1922 and 18. That’s for three to four games above 500.

[00:16:26] You would hope that at that point, that Portland could then take that mojo on the road and string together. Some, some victories. Um, but Portland also has to be very cautious that they don’t fall into the trap of. Fool’s gold where, yeah, you’re winning all these games. Like, like I said, Portland could reel off all those home victories, but if they don’t win on the road or look competitive on the road, uh, it’s hard to take Portland.

[00:16:56] Um, seriously, when you also [00:17:00] factor in that the Western conference, I think is significantly down this year. A lot of it has to do with age of some certain superstars. When you’re looking at like a LeBron in Los Angeles, they also traded for Westbrook who hasn’t been the best fit. You look at the Denver nuggets who have just been decimated by injuries.

[00:17:16] You’ve got Michael Porter Jr. Who just had back surgery. He’s out for the entire season. Jamal Murray probably won’t be back until the spring. Uh, PJ dozer tore his ACL against the blazers he’s out of. He is out for the season. So you have Denver who is not going to be a factor this year. Could they win a round like they did last year without Jamal Murray?

[00:17:36] Absolutely. But I think that’s Denver ceiling. You start to look, look ahead, Dallas still hasn’t found that piece next to Luke Don judge, who knows what Kauai looks like when he comes back. Really it’s golden state and Phoenix. Utah’s at 14 and seven. They’re probably up in the echelon as well, but golden state and Phoenix, and then really four through 10 right [00:18:00] now, 25% into the season.

[00:18:02] Portland’s only a game and a half back of the Clippers. The Clippers are at 11 and nine. Portland’s at 10 and 11. And I really don’t see any of the teams not currently in the plan. When you talk about Sacramento San Antonio, OKC, new Orleans Houston, I don’t see those teams making a charge to come up into that play in scenario.

[00:18:26] So if you’re Portland, you’re kind of doing a balancing act, right? You want to make sure you get your victories, but you also want to make sure that you are, I don’t know. I don’t know if style points is the right way to look at it, but you want to play the right way. You definitely want to rack up some, some victories on the road because the way the west is currently stacked, that four seat is so gettable and you can reach.

[00:18:54] I think the blazer ceiling is the second round. You can reach your ceiling. If you start to [00:19:00] handle your business. And the schedule has, I think has been incredibly easy so far for the blazers, especially given the teams they’ve played without their heavy hitters. Um, they’re about to get a huge dose of home cooking if they can.

[00:19:12] Now is the time to make their move is essentially what I’m saying. Like, I don’t know if it makes them a championship contender. I think everyone in rip city probably wants to see them make a deal. But for the time being, this is the roster that is currently competing on a night in and night out basis.

[00:19:29] If w if they are, if they’re a sprinter and they’re running a race now is when they have to hit their kick, because you have to start to get some separation from these teams. You have to start to get about 500, get some momentum, because if you don’t do it now, Sage, just like you mentioned, when I told you 15 of the next night, Or at home, those road games are coming in.

[00:19:50] They’re coming up quick and you want to have a good cushion. When those road games come, I’m gonna call him.

[00:19:55] Dustin: There’s going to be a lot of away games. When do the [00:20:00] pleasers just believe we’re a bad away from home team? Do you think that’s starting to set in with them going one win and a bunch of losses?

[00:20:08] When I was watching that Utah game, though, I felt like Utah had it in hand the entire time they were playing like Terry Stotts is Damien’s where Dame just did everything and pounded the ball in the first quarter. And then the second quarter, they were just like, oh, this team’s bad at defense. Let’s just abuse them.

[00:20:26] When does the point where they have to win some away games or this is going to be a legitimate, real thing? Or is it already a legitimate real? It has to

[00:20:34] Sage: already be there. Sage, when you are one in 10 on the road, With only the Houston rockets as the

[00:20:40] Dustin: that’s a bad win. Like that’s not a, that’s not a statement whenever not at

[00:20:44] Sage: all.

[00:20:45] Houston is the only worst road record in the entire league. You’ve already played 20 more than 25% of your road games. What I have seen from Portland [00:21:00] is they just kind of have no effort in no fight on the road. Like they get punched in the mouth and they just kind of recoil and like they did, they just take that result, like, yep.

[00:21:13] We’re losing tonight. When you, when you see them at home, they can be down 20 and they, they believe they’re going to come back. It’s really an oddity. I can’t put my finger on it. Um, maybe it’s all of the uncertainties. That’s you know, hanging above the franchise, whether it’s full Shay, whether it’s Lillard, whether it’s McCollum, the new coach, uh, just everything like everything that, that has gone on.

[00:21:40] I mean, you don’t want to die. I, I don’t think they’re a team that would dog it in front of their home fans. And I think that’s probably what’s keeping them alive at home is shit. We don’t want to get booed. Like these fans pay good money to watch us play. Like let’s, let’s go out there and have some hometown pride, but on the road it’s like, you know, whatever.

[00:21:58] Like, [00:22:00]

[00:22:00] Dustin: I feel like this team knows they suck on the road and it shows. It’s a

[00:22:06] Sage: mentality. Now it’s almost like, you know, when you go up to the free throw line and you’re like, oh, I’m a bad free throw shooter. I’m not going to make you break it when you have confidence and you show up, um, it, it comes through.

[00:22:06] Uh, but that, that was, I mean, that, that shows you the week. That was like that, that was our good. And we started to get into other topics that weren’t as good. I have a good beat. Okay. You’re good.

[00:22:16] Dustin: Judaism, Anthony Simons, when nuclear a bunch, this, this, uh, this week, he had a really awesome third quarter against the warriors, which made the game look like it was closer than it actually is.

[00:22:32] And then, uh,

[00:22:33] Sage: he was 10 for

[00:22:34] Dustin: 15 tonight. Yeah. He’s had some really high, high ceiling games, some nuclear games. So to see him perform, like we shouldn’t that warriors game. They’re bringing Dre Mon back to defend Anthony Simons. So having the, the, you know, the best defender in the league have to guard your fourth year regard is pretty good.

[00:22:56] So that’s, that’s my good junior. What’s [00:23:00] your bad for the week bad. I’ve started to notice this teams don’t respect and to see your little shot at all. If you watch that game today, when both John Bogdanovich was on the. You treated him like camp more. He treated him like the Utah jazz showed more respect to use of NERC is hitting a corner three than they did in this year.

[00:23:27] Little. And I think that’s starting to be a trend. They know the scouting report on the Sears, that he’s a really good slasher and an inconsistent shooter. So if teams are just, when he’s in there, they’re just collapsing the paint. So there’s not much that the blazers can do when there’s, when you’re driving to the paint for the kick kick shoot.

[00:23:47] Well, if you can’t drive to the lane because they’re trapping you essentially because they don’t respect our shooters, that’s a problem. So the sear little needs to at least show that he’s willing to shoot the three so they [00:24:00] can show a little respect to him because when I was watching him, like, they’re, they, they just did not care what he did as long as he wasn’t actively slashing.

[00:24:09] They didn’t, he, wasn’t not a threat. So I think that that’s why Tony Snell started. With, uh, Norman Palau, because he at least has the respect of the, uh, the opposing team. Like if he’s open, he’ll shoot it and probably make it at a four out of 10 clip within the sear. They don’t even trust them at all. So the spacing wouldn’t see her little when he was in the games week was my bad.

[00:24:34] Sage: Yeah. And in the season like this, I still want to see this year, shoot the ball. I want to see him develop. I don’t care if he goes one for 10. Uh, I think he needs the reps.

[00:24:42] Dustin: I think that the PT is invaluable for him right now. Exactly. But it’s something that I noticed, like our offense is awful right now.

[00:24:51] Why? Oh shit. The third, the small forward at all times, it doesn’t respect our three point shooting, you know, youngest player. That’s a [00:25:00] problem. So we need to, I don’t know how to get people to respect his shot at any. Like, I think everybody’s seen the highlight dunks on the top shots, so they know, oh, this guy has an athletic.

[00:25:15] But they don’t respect the shallots. So ever. So it was just like, it was re it was triggering me, like, is Campese more on your team? Why is it such bad spacing

[00:25:24] Sage: necessarily you have the other forward opposite in this year, almost refuses to shoot the basketball. Nothing

[00:25:30] Dustin: was wrong with him. And he’s he, I used to make fun of Tony Snell for, he’s just running cardio right now.

[00:25:37] Robert Covington’s running cardio right now. And did you see the replay of him throwing the mask in it? Ricocheting it? Did you think he deserved to get kicked out of the game for that? No,

[00:25:49] Sage: he, I think I was listening to on the radio. They always, he always throws his mask, like just toss it. Like it just happened to bounce and hit the official and they get in a tizzy fit and like, oh, [00:26:00] we have to throw you out because you become like, no, I don’t think I did not like the call.

[00:26:05] Dustin: Yeah. I mean, he’s a six, eight body. And when you’re so. Blacking and Heights have not even having him put so much more stress on, you know, Larry Nance and use of, so it w it was a damn shame that he was kicked out. What is your bad for this week? My

[00:26:28] Sage: bad for this week is the defense. And I wanted to see if the statistics were matching what my eyes and ears were, were telling me.

[00:26:37] Cause usually, you know, you go by the eye test and then you look at the statute like, oh, that doesn’t match up. Well, it matched up, uh, for me. So I, the defense was my bad for the week, especially on the road. Portland is allowing 116.8 points per game on the road. They’ve only held one opponent below a hundred points in [00:27:00] 11 games away from the row city.

[00:27:02] Of course, that was against Houston. Their only victory allowing just 92 points. Even more. I think worrisome is Portland, just isn’t competitive on the road right now. The average margin of defeat is by 14 and a half points and seven of the 10 losses on the road or her by 10 or more points. And so that I dug a little bit deeper and just wanted to take a look at Portland’s statistics, defensively, but also compare them last year because everyone knew defense was an issue last year.

[00:27:35] I mean, we, we spent countless of hours complaining about Terry Stotts and his defensive schemes. Um, you’ll all Shea also when out and. Made, I would say not significant, obviously not significant, but he did make moves to address the defensive side of the ball, especially off of the bench allowing and his cancer and Carmelo Anthony to, to walk, uh, bringing in Larry Nance Jr.

[00:27:58] And Cody seller to kind of shore [00:28:00] up, um, that, that defensive back line off the bench. And, you know, overall, it really hasn’t made too much of a difference. So if you look down Portland’s defensive rating is 29th. This year. It was 29th last year. It’s, it’s better by about four points, but it’s still second worse than the league.

[00:28:22] Portland is also 25th in opponent points per game. They’re giving up about 111 points per game. They were 23rd in that category last year, giving up one 14 scoring is down this year. That’s why that number is higher, even though

[00:28:35] Dustin: a four point differential is because you can be way more physical.

[00:28:40] Sage: I think that’s a great, uh, Observation teams are being more, uh, physical, less files are being called.

[00:28:49] I mean, just the scoring is down. Field goal percentage is down, uh, across the league. So I think you can attribute that there. Um, and then in field goal, percentage four on the second, second, worst and field goal [00:29:00] percentage for opponents, uh, allowing 47.7%. They were about that same percentage last year, 47.3, that was 25th, um, uh, last year.

[00:29:09] And then I wanted to look at the arc, but the arc is such a critical component to defense in the modern game. And Portland is a Bismal there as well. They ranked 28th and opponent three points made per game, uh, nearly 14 per game and they ranked 29th and opponent three point field goal percentage stage 47.3.

[00:29:31] So do you think 38, they allow 38.7% from downtowns. And in regards to last year, Portland was 19th in three points, made 2012 0.9. So they, they are allowing one more, three point made per game this year. And the percentage is similar. They, they allowed 37.2 this year. So they are not defending the arc even with upgrades off of the bench.

[00:29:57] And then. Lastly, [00:30:00] the one I want it to look at, because I’ve always said that teams that make Portland make the extra pass on, on defense. You just kind of, you can, you can carve Portland’s defense up like a Thanksgiving Turkey. I saw that against Utah, there was a play in the second quarter where they were swinging it around the perimeter and then Connolly ended up dribbling it and throwing the lob to go bare teams that assist the ball at a high clip or going to shred Portland’s defense.

[00:30:24] And sure enough, Portland allows the second, most assists per game by an opponent, 26.1. They were 16 last year, 24.9. So yeah, they may be better guarding the pick and roll this year, but teams are figuring out if you just, like you said to Utah, first quarter, they were just dribbling the ball, but then they started to figure out, Hey, if we make them move and think the rotations are going to get there on time, they’re going to find the weakness and they’re getting really any look that they want.

[00:30:55] Dustin: The initials defense is better. You like eyeball [00:31:00] test. It’s obviously trying Harper, but I, I think that it’s because of the scheme that makes them try harder. I feel like this scheme is really awful for opera Covington and he’s spoke like you see in all the shit that Chauncey village has said about Robert Covington being supposedly being our guy.

[00:31:20] But I think that putting him in a box the way that he is supposed to like play defense for this team is really negatively affecting him. So

[00:31:30] Sage: Ben Simmons, he’s not dream on green. He can not lock up someone one-on-one

[00:31:34] Dustin: well, so the, the, what they do with Probert a lot is he’s helping on like literally half the court is Robert Covington’s responsibility that is putting that much pressure on him.

[00:31:48] Make every play, like let’s say that they’re loading up on the strong side of the floor. He is responsible for all of the weak side defense, putting that much pressure on him and then on picking [00:32:00] roles, having to cover for everybody. Like I know he is not playing good D offense right now, but I don’t think he’d put in any good position defensively to make plays.

[00:32:09] And I think last year, the saving grace for us not being an all time bad team was Robert Covington’s effort. Like he’s, he single-handedly won us some games defensively. Now let’s putting like who I, Leonard amounts of pressure on him to make plays every game. And he just, not him. He’s an awful free safety.

[00:32:31] He’s not, he’s not Ramsey on the Rams. He is a, I don’t know. I feel like this. Isn’t with the rule change. I don’t think it’s any better than it was last year, because if let’s just say you could, you could have, and this cancer be a bigger bully. Would he be as big of a liability if he could use his hands on players?

[00:32:52] Like the way that they’re playing defense, he would ne he wouldn’t nearly be as bad and Carmelo Anthony being able to be cheeky [00:33:00] defender and like probably pull the Jersey. So, I mean, like, it has a more aggressive package, but when you really look at what we are as a defense. Are we that different than a Terry stouts coach team team, smart teams are going to find the weakness.

[00:33:16] Like imagine what Chris Paul can do against this team when we play him. And I,

[00:33:21] Sage: you know, you watch Steph in the warriors, like that’s the litmus test, right? They are the best team in the NBA right now. And he’s arguably the MVP front runner

[00:33:30] Dustin: board carving up our defense man. Like when you, when you see them do like celebratory shots and shit, he’s bored playing as it’s so easy.

[00:33:39] Like it’s easy for him to diagnose what happened. I don’t think

[00:33:43] Sage: any coach with any scheme can have even an average defense with the way the roster is currently constructed. And that goes back to being undersized. And I think under-skilled on the defensive end. Like defense is a skill and we’ve talked about [00:34:00] it.

[00:34:00] Ad nauseum Sage, if you can’t stop the ball, or if anyone who can just say I’m taking the hot man, I’m going to stop them from scoring. It just all kind of falls apart one way or another, either in the pick and roll or off of dribble penetration or off of ball movement, player movement one way or another, a good to great team is going to find a way to make you pay.

[00:34:24] And when you lack size and you lack skill on that end of the floor, it’s this is, this is the result. And I think this is a huge reason why they are playing so poorly on the road is teams play better at home? So you’re going to get a team’s best shot on their home court. And when you have that, that, that roster, that scheme and that mentality that we’re going to lose, that’s why we’re seeing.

[00:34:50] Seven of 10 losses by double digits. Why we’re seeing 15 point margin of, of defeats. Like Portland is not even competitive. And I think if Portland [00:35:00] were one in 10 and I know nobody would want to be one to 10 on the road, but if they were one in 10 and maybe they were just like losing by three or four points, you can see that, oh, one or two plays here or there.

[00:35:11] And it’s going to turn around, like, it’s an 82 game season. Like the, the,

[00:35:15] Dustin: the losing it’s such a deficit. There’s no

[00:35:19] Sage: everything is about to even out, but no, it hasn’t even been, been close in. I think the concerning area is teams make that one run and Portland’s not even countering. There’s not even a punch back.

[00:35:30] It’s like, they’re getting knocked out. And the referee saying, you know, that’s a 10 count we’re done with this second round

[00:35:35] Dustin: knockout. It’s a cannabis reference. Anyway, I figured it was a, so I have a thought exercise. Let’s say a genie, granted you a wish. And the wish was you could add five inches to this roster.

[00:35:53] Who are you? How are you dividing? The five inches? I know this is a bad one, but [00:36:00] how, if you can increase the height of our players by five inches, total, who, how are you allocating the height increase

[00:36:09] Sage: from our current starters, our

[00:36:11] Dustin: current team. Do you make Dame a super-duper star by making him six, seven or so?

[00:36:20] How, how are you making this team better? If the genie said you can increase the hype,

[00:36:28] Sage: this is a really good. Could

[00:36:28] Dustin: you just think of this? Yeah. I just thought of it while you were talking.

[00:36:31] Sage: God damn. None of this thing could ask question. Dame’s already like 63, right? Yeah. I’d give Dame two inches. Just so he’d be even more legit. I would give Anthony Simons.

[00:36:51] Dustin: So it’d be six, five or something.

[00:36:53] Sage: I’d give him three. I’d give him the other three. Cause I think he’s got the

[00:36:59] [00:37:00] NAS would get a little bit bigger so we could really play the three. And Anthony I’d make him six, six, because I think he at six, six could be an all-star. So Dame ant NAS three, the three biggest hope, uh, silver linings on the season.

[00:37:15] Dustin: Yeah, man,

[00:37:16] Sage: like I thought about Norman Powell, but I think at six, four, he can play the two guard.

[00:37:22] Uh, just fine. Um, I thought about CJ, but then even CJ taller. Doesn’t the styles of play still kind of, um, I

[00:37:31] Dustin: mean, I couldn’t imagine CJ being six to eight dribbling the way he does.

[00:37:35] Sage: Yeah. I think his size actually benefits him. If that makes any sense.

[00:37:40] Dustin: He’s harder to see when you’re like, like, let’s say a centers fighting the guards, fighting through a screen and can’t, you know, use of seven feet in humongous.

[00:37:51] Sage: One that I would consider. I wouldn’t change any of my answers, but I think if there was a fourth, it would be Larry Nance. So he could actually play the center [00:38:00] and you can have a fully switchable lineup. I think that that would be a consideration for me.

[00:38:06] Dustin: Yeah. I don’t know. It’s tough. Like if Dan was six, seven, he would that shot and those dribbling skills like shit, we don’t need the four other players is lame, but go on to be one against everybody.

[00:38:23] But yeah, like, I don’t know. Like, I feel like you’ve got to make the two and three, a little taller. So I think Larry, I think next year little would be really good person to make. If he’s really six, five, let’s make him six, seven. Cause I think with his jumping ability as a six, seven forward, he could play the four, like he ends possessions with those rebounds.

[00:38:51] So yeah. I don’t know. I was just thinking like, how would you improve the team with hype? But I think that it has to, it has to be in the wings. [00:39:00] Like just the way that we have to play defense with them covering the rolling big it’s like, you know, NAS can do a lot better if he’s six, seven and six, five,

[00:39:13] Sage: what was your ugly?

[00:39:15] Dustin: I think the injury on Norma Val asked me my ugly, like to see. Cause he, he, he landed on top or Robert Covington landed on top of him and he was like, not feeling good after that. And then when he went up for that layup and Graeme on met him, like the way he limped, I was like, oh shit, this is legitimately serious.

[00:39:36] And I don’t want to know that are like, I don’t know, want to know what our offensive defense looks like when you know, Tony Snell’s taking those shots or playing that defense. Like I, uh, in that, uh, Utah game, I really Ms. Norman Powell. So him being gone was definitely my ugly.

[00:39:55] Sage: Pardon the pun or the play on words, [00:40:00] but my ugly, I would just say the Portland state.

[00:40:04] Pleasers and it kind of goes back. Like it was hard because right. The team goes, goes one and three and the trends really, um, hell held serve. They won at home. They’re bowed in the road. Like how do we find a different way to talk about this team on a weekly basis when we’re seeing the same, same results, we’re sports, we’re seeing everything is the same.

[00:40:30] And that’s kind of where I was like, everything is the same. And I think that’s why that’s my ugly for the week is despite a new coach, multiple off-season moves, Portland had great health. Only Norman Powell has missed time in our rotation. I think it’s been a manageable schedule. The team is worse off compared to last year.

[00:40:49] Right now at this point, Portland was 12 and nine, including seven and four on the road in 10 of those games were played without CJ McCollum and use of Turkish [00:41:00] who got significantly injured. Right now you’re 10 and 11, one and 10 on the road. And you’ve had great health like that is mind blowing to me that how upset we were last year, Portland somehow was even better.

[00:41:19] And they are outpacing this current roster, which doesn’t pass the smell test. But here

[00:41:27] Dustin: we are. How much did you say, did you talk about how negatively affected our offensive? No. Cause I, I would be curious to see what the, what the difference is between our offense last year and this year, because I feel like our offense last year was way more potent than it is this year.

[00:41:46] Sage: Well, yeah, because do you think the, the main culprit of that is Dane playing off.

[00:41:54] Dustin: Probably cause I, I am of the mind that you give your best [00:42:00] player, the ball, if we are dream on green. Sure. He can play ball maybe. Yeah, sure. Here you go. Well, we saw it in the Olympics. He’s not good at it, so yeah, exactly.

[00:42:12] He’s it, he takes weird angles. Like when they do the Iverson cut to get him space, he takes really obscure angles to get the ball past the playing off the ball. He’s frustrated as hell doing it because he cause this

[00:42:29] Sage: change in year 10. That’s my biggest question. Dame is not a spring chicken. He

[00:42:34] Dustin: doesn’t have my age.

[00:42:35] Right. Like he and I are the same age. It’s 31. I’m under. But like, I feel like they, he. I don’t think the coach built the rock, the scheme around their best player. I think he built the scheme around CJ to make him better. And I think that that is a weird swing of logic to make [00:43:00] it. So your secondary player is as involved as your star.

[00:43:05] I think it’s a weird, like I think that this game negatively affects Dame, I think in a negatively affects use of, I think it negatively affects Norman. Amps and CJ are the two that I’m like, oh, there’s a legitimate increase in production because of this. So I think, I think that the scheme is at a fundamental disadvantage when is not making Dame’s life easier.

[00:43:28] In fact, it’s making it a lot harder because he has to fight off us. Like, let’s say we’re playing Minnesota. Cause we’re playing them. You think Patrick Beverley is gonna let Dame get the ball off ball. Do you think that drew holiday is going to let Dame get the ball off ball? Like they’re going to make him exert so much energy to get away from them to receive the ball than if he just had the ball in his hands.

[00:43:55] So I think absolutely him having the ball less and don’t get me wrong. [00:44:00] Look at the stats. He has the ball and enhanced quite a bit, but they’re, force-feeding like, it’s like force-feeding other players to take difficult shots. And I, I think. It’s a weird to make, make it the best players life a little harder.

[00:44:18] Sage: Yeah. And I think a lot was made of the free throws and the way the officials were officiating the game this year and how Dame was probably the most negatively affected of all of the star players. However, in the past few games, he’s had double digit free throw attempts and he’s averaging four, 4.6 free throw attempts per game.

[00:44:36] That’s only 2.6 less than last season. He’s only taking one fewer shot than last season. However, he averaged 28.8 points per game. He’s down to 22 where Damian Lillard is struggling is in the percentages. He’s 45% from the field last year, 40% this year, and the big, the big difference, 10 and a [00:45:00] half threes per game.

[00:45:01] At 39% clip compared to nine and a half this year at a 30% clip. That’s where Damian Lillard is struggling. And I think that’s where you can pinpoint the blazers offense as struggling. I think he was getting better, looks with the ball in his hands off of the high pick and roll, letting those three pointers fly.

[00:45:20] That’s where I believe Portland’s offense has, has struggled not getting your best player, the ball, like I will say, when you watch the team play, they do have good ball movement. The ball movement has been better. I don’t think the ball sticks as much as it did last year, but I don’t think that has made up for the fact that your best player and a top 10 player in the game is not getting the same shot, but in the same situations, like those two don’t have equal weight.

[00:45:50] And I think that’s what is

[00:45:51] Dustin: attributed it’s negatively correlated with. Robert going, didn’t shooting a shot, more shots and Dame suiting less. [00:46:00] That’s a negative correlation for wins bowel movements. Great. It really is. But I feel like if you’re creating shots for people that aren’t as good as your best player, it’s like it’s helping them, but is it helping our team win?

[00:46:22] Sometimes Dame just needs to be the best player on the team and say, Hey, step back. Daddy’s about to win us this game. Or I ha I think he’s doing a really good job of getting people the ball, but this seems based

[00:46:41] Sage: on name shots against Utah, that that can happen.

[00:46:48] Dustin: He is our Allen Iverson. Does it, uh, how many times did Allen Iverson not touched the ball on a possession on the Sixers? Phew. Yeah. And I think that we’re doing a lot of the shit [00:47:00] Philadelphia did in 2001. Now maybe it’s cause Chauncey Billups played then, but like we’re trying to make him feel something is not man, let the guy who’s used to touching the ball, touch the ball.

[00:47:15] Sage: I just don’t think we’re getting many of those.

[00:47:18] Dustin: He doesn’t have the ceiling he did last year.

[00:47:20] Sage: We’re not getting those surge moments that, that we S that we’ve just grown so accustomed to seeing. And I think you need those on the road more than you do at home. We’ve talked about this role players played better at home on the road.

[00:47:33] You need your superstar to set the tone and to bail out your, the rest of the team when kind of things are going south and kind of stabilize everyone. But. When he’s not being put in position to do that, that’s not really going to happen. And that kind of brings up my next point. It wasn’t really a part of an ugly or a bad, but I just noticed that against Denver, Damon, CJ, both played so efficient and Denver had [00:48:00] had no chance.

[00:48:01] However, that doesn’t happen enough, frankly. It rarely happens. You look at this road trip, Damon, CJ combined were incredibly inefficient in that is a recipe for disaster on this last three game road trip. The two of them combined to shoot 35 of 99, which is 35%, 12 of 40 from downtown 30%. When you’re shooting that volume 35% and 30%, aren’t gonna cut it.

[00:48:32] And that’s Portland in a nutshell right there. I mean, right now Dame and CJ is. What they’re hanging their hat on and it’s been discussed. We, we, we, we know we’re where we stand on that, but it’s just further cements the fact that when those two don’t play efficient, the blazers have zero chance of winning a game.

[00:48:55] Dustin: And now the refs aren’t calling as many fouls like [00:49:00] Dame can be bless. Your damn could be completely inefficient, but he has 10 free throws. Makes it a lot easier. Um, I, I think that the refs are events. I think the three-point fouls absolutely do away with them, but when you’re driving to the hole and you get fouled and they don’t call it, that is fucking annoying.

[00:49:22] Like, it feels like the rest are starting to be more attentive to like rewarding the aggressive drives and shit. I when, when we’re inefficient and free throws are easy shots, don’t bail us out is rough out there, but I feel like easy shots. It’s always been an issue for us. H w w O I feel like the only time we were good at like easy, like backs at Davis getting rebounds

[00:49:53] Sage: the blazer since I’ve been a fan, have never been good at getting easy shots.

[00:49:57] The early nineties teams were criticized for their [00:50:00] half-court inefficiencies. They were murder in the fast break, but that, that was the wrap on them. The 2000 blazers. They didn’t have a go-to player. They hung their hat on defense. It was a different player every night, kind of bailing them out. Um, I remember Charles Barkley first really brought it up during the rise with us blazers when it was Nate McMillan’s ISO ball with Brandon, Roy Portland never got out and ran.

[00:50:22] They always, you know, they grinded it out in the half court. And then now it’s the same thing. Just substitute Dame for Brandon. And that’s how it’s been. So this, this team, even with all of its greatness, probably only the 77 blazers were able to manufacture great shots on a consistent basis. And that was due to Maurice Lucas and bill Walton’s brilliance, Sage dribble pass shoot, actually dribble or shoot.

[00:50:51] We’re going to make this a weekly occurrence until something happens, dribble or shoot. This is the week we find out about new OSHA.[00:51:00]

[00:51:01] Dustin: I’m feeling like we’re going to get it in Christmas. So

[00:51:05] Sage: purchasing passwords, shoot pass, or shoot.

[00:51:07] Dustin: Yeah. So dribble it. But,

[00:51:11] Sage: um, we’re we’re in week four, this, this is new for, or

[00:51:15] Dustin: you feel like if we’re a good organization, it would have already been done. But since that’s a questionable thing right now, I think we’re waiting a few more weeks.

[00:51:28] So I’ll pass. What about you? I’m

[00:51:30] Sage: going to shoot it. Just, I’m trying to, uh, speak it into existence.

[00:51:36] Dustin: I mean, there’s so many decisions to be made. Like we’re putting our stuff, like when’s the trade deadline, like March

[00:51:45] Sage: early February.

[00:51:47] Dustin: That’s in two months. There’s so many decisions that need to be made before that.

[00:51:54] Like, could you imagine reciting Robert Covington? Okay with him [00:52:00] playing 15 minutes a game,

[00:52:05] like we need to trade some, like we have four guys that are under six, under six, four that our four best players like holy shit, there needs to be some shit the change then it hasn’t. And I don’t think, I don’t think it’ll happen till the new year, man.

[00:52:25] Sage: I hope you are wrong there, but let’s get to some fan questions.

[00:52:29] Before we look ahead to this current schedule,

[00:52:32] Dustin: I haven’t looked at any of these, this going to be complete

[00:52:34] Sage: surprise question from longtime listener, Kim Thrasher. Kim wants to know why on why can’t the blazers play real basketball on the road. They can’t just be a home team. Worst record in the NBA.

[00:52:48] That’s cool.

[00:52:52] Dustin: Ida first off, I would like to say, love you, Kim, but I fucking, no, man.

[00:52:59] Sage: I think [00:53:00] it’s a mentality like, like, like, like we talked about with the free throws, you start doing something enough and you get the same results. You start to expect that to happen. When you do that same action there. Now they’re getting peppered with questions by the media.

[00:53:15] Why aren’t you guys winning on the road? They see the scoreboard. They know they’re not winning on the road. They don’t expect to win on the road. That is a huge, the mental aspect of the game is such a huge portion of it. I remember I had all of these early nineties blazers videos that every year they did a video yearbook and I think it was the 91 video yearbook or the blazers went like 27 and 14 on the road.

[00:53:37] At the time it was a franchise record. Jerome Kersey was interviewed and he was like, every time we stepped up on the. We didn’t think we were going to win. We knew we were going to win. We expected to win and you have to have that mentality. When you’re on the road, you’ve got 20,000 people against you.

[00:53:57] You’re going up against a team that’s comfortable [00:54:00] in their own gym. You’re probably playing the third game in five nights. You’re not sleeping in your own bed. You’re not seeing your family. You’re seeing the same people over and over again. You have to go out there and want to prove people wrong. You have to have a nastiness.

[00:54:15] Portland has none of that. They’re so casual right now. Just watching them play. It looks like they’re just, you know, cool. We’re out here. We’re just, you know, playing some playground ball, just kind of chill and not taking it super, super seriously. There’s just, there’s no fire. There’s no spark. There.

[00:54:32] There’s nothing that the team is collectively rallying behind. Um, they’re not just one thing. There are multiple things missing from this team. And those are just some of the reasons that I think the blazers aren’t playing good basketball on, on the road.

[00:54:50] Dustin: So I’ve been saying this on Twitter. Do you think it’s time we bring in some asshole, that’s going to yell and scream at people’s faces or how do we [00:55:00] get that player?

[00:55:02] That’s what people people want. Like some people want some guy that’s going to scream in people’s faces who.

[00:55:10] Sage: Um, that that would be my question to those people is who, because if you’re going to scream and yell, you have to have the reputation. You have to have the credibility. If you’re just some benchwarmer, they’re going to run you out of the

[00:55:21] Dustin: locker room.

[00:55:21] Remember how, how CJ dealt with Festus. Ezeli like, you’re not even then on the court, man, you don’t deserve, we don’t care what you have to say. I thought that

[00:55:30] Sage: was, that was, uh, not, not a good look on CJ’s part because Festus Ezeli had won an NBA championship. He was just trying to help out. Um, so I, I did not agree with, with CJ there, but yeah, you can see that’s how they handle things in the NBA locker room.

[00:55:43] Sage. Really? I can think of two players that would be able to do that right now. Pat bell. No, God, no. I think he has a terrible reputation, especially in, in Portland. Uh, you Donna’s has. But he’s not leaving my Miami and Draymond green. He ain’t leaving golden state. Those are [00:56:00] the two players that I think could walk into the locker room right now and say, shut the fuck up.

[00:56:04] Here’s what we’re going to do. And everyone would respect and listen, that’s it?

[00:56:11] Dustin: Yeah. Um, I, I just think that like the, the yelling and screaming shit doesn’t work now, these well,

[00:56:21] Sage: it does, but it has to be by the, the person doing it has to have a weight behind their words and not many people have that, like in today’s NBA.

[00:56:32] So that’s why those players are so, so rare. They don’t leave. Yeah. You can’t just have some rando walk up and start writing it and getting it somebody’s space. There’s not going to hold any weight there. They’re just going to tell you to piss off.

[00:56:47] Dustin: I think like, I watched like Willy green. And I feel like the way to get these guys to play better is to inspire them and not like [00:57:00] shit on their mistakes.

[00:57:02] So I have a different way of, I got, I want my guys to communicate better with each other, as a team and work together to create one common. Cause I think like the yelling screaming should just doesn’t work

[00:57:16] Sage: also. Maybe the team, I mean, not maybe the team just isn’t good. So I don’t think anybody expected one in 10 on the road bad, but it’s just, it’s not a good constructed team.

[00:57:28] So when you face teams in their home gyms, they’re just kind of pick it, picking them apart. So that just, it’s a lot of uphill obstacles for the blazers to navigate. And they’re not even getting past the first couple. Um, unfortunately,

[00:57:43] Dustin: so is that, is there another fan question or do we just have beloved Kim.

[00:57:49] Sage: Uh, one more, uh, actually, yeah, one more. No, two more, two more. One’s a quick one because I’m make comments on, uh, but question from, from, uh, at cat rinser one of my favorite [00:58:00] follows on Twitter. Katherine wants to know what are some best tips for self-care in reference to this term analysts. And I just made up that word trailblazer season.

[00:58:13] Dustin: That sounds like a disease in the fucking forties, 1840s on it. I got the term. I have only a week to live

[00:58:25] Sage: well. Don’t watch the trailblazers. If you only have a week to live, you want to be happy. What are

[00:58:29] Dustin: your sources? What are your

[00:58:32] Sage: self care tips? Sage

[00:58:40] Dustin: it’s like.

[00:58:43] Myself tips are different than yours because you you’ve been a fan of this team for 30 plus years. I’ve only done it 10. So day-to-day watching this team isn’t as bad as it is for people that have lived the rip city [00:59:00] life for awhile. I bet against the blazers and I’m normally, right. So I guess get into the Oregon sports book and bet the bet against the other team

[00:59:14] Sage: and say, Joe, we’re going to need to put one of those disclaimers in the podcast.

[00:59:17] Like if you need to seek gambling, help, please

[00:59:19] Dustin: call this number. I haven’t gambled in three days.

[00:59:23] Sage: I know. I would say you were saying, Hey, gamble for self care. I think we need to put some disclaimers in there.

[00:59:29] Dustin: Well, what I do and. Uh, who are we playing next? Detroit pistons going heavy on the deep pain DFS.

[00:59:38] I’m going heavy in germy. Granted DFS were awful defensive team. So yeah, I try and I try not to get us up and down as, uh, most people, I think I have a more even keel, I guess I shouldn’t have done the arm movement of even on a podcast, but I try and stay more [01:00:00] even keeled and, you know, uh, use the knowledge I have of this team to my financial.

[01:00:06] Gain more. So, yeah, I think

[01:00:07] Sage: that’s a really good point. That’s worked for me this year. Like I do to the whole debacle with, with root sports. Um, I’m only able to watch the national games. So when I do get to watch them, like, I just try to enjoy it. Like if you root for them to, to do well, if they win cool, if they lose cool.

[01:00:27] Uh, when I, when I listened to the games on the radio, like just kind of accept whatever loss happens, like don’t really root for either result. Like there’s removing emotion from the sport.

[01:00:40] Dustin: And I think you’ve done a really good job at that because you, as a person is very emotional. So to, to take that away from the result that you’re, you know, like you have a blazers room, you have multiple blazers room, I’m looking at your office right now.

[01:00:59] Like. [01:01:00] You’ve done a very good job of taking the emotion out of the game. Cause I’ve, I am who you text during blazer games. Mostly you do not take the, you have the emotion for most of our friendship. It’s like, oh, we’re doing shitty. I’m going to get a text from Dustin about how shitty we’re doing eventually.

[01:01:19] So I want to congratulate you on your, uh, taking some, some of the emotion out of watching plays or games. Cause

[01:01:28] Sage: it’s, I also like knowing the expectation of this team, right? They are a second round ceiling. They’re going to make the playoffs. They’re probably going to go on some wind streaks, probably going to go on some losing.

[01:01:40] So just go into that, knowing it also like

[01:01:44] Dustin: watch other

[01:01:44] Sage: games too. I’ve watched other teams I’ve read more than I’ve ever. No, I wouldn’t say I’m more than ever. I’ve I’ve been doing a good job of reading probably the past five years, but like finding, finding different books to read. Um, I still like watching old [01:02:00] games.

[01:02:00] Um, that’s been, I just, I just love nerding out on that and, and finding other,

[01:02:06] Dustin: we’ll also do some throwback, Thursdays, cause this shit is not fun. Yeah. I mean, it’s, it’s I to get to see you, so that’s

[01:02:12] Sage: good. Yeah, because that’s, that’s a challenge to discuss like what, what, what are we going to talk about?

[01:02:17] They won at home. They lost on the road. Like this is the find some players that

[01:02:21] Dustin: you love. Like I love Herbert Jones. Yeah. So I get to watch her

[01:02:24] Sage: live defense players. You like that? Aren’t on the blazers that you thought you can

[01:02:28] Dustin: follow or some of the guys that

[01:02:30] Sage: you love watching right now, John Miranda.

[01:02:34] Dustin: That damn shame about his injury, but

[01:02:37] Sage: thankfully it’s not season-ending. Yeah.

[01:02:39] Dustin: I think that who we’re going to play in a few days is one of my favorites. Jontay Marie, I love Cole, Anthony. If anyone wants the 12 cereal on the newest top shot, I got you

[01:02:54] Sage: also not being

[01:02:55] Dustin: emotional is awesome.

[01:02:58] Sage: Has allowed me to enjoy other teams.[01:03:00]

[01:03:00] I love the bucks with honest and true. I enjoy watching the warriors now. Like they’re not my rival. Like it’s, it’s, they’re, they’re fun to watch watching Steph running around the court is, has been fun. Uh, Phoenix is on a 16 game WinStreak. Like there’s a lot of the Lakers are losing that’s that’s something we all could rally behind.

[01:03:21] There are things to do. Um, actually the

[01:03:24] Dustin: basketball’s coming, like watch.

[01:03:27] Sage: Yes. Yes. Scout young prospects. We don’t have a

[01:03:30] Dustin: pick in the first round. Most likely

[01:03:33] Sage: I did today was really good. Like turned off the lights, had the Christmas lights in the house, lit some candles, had the radio on and was just like, you know, Jack was just chatting with Olga, but also pat and the cats, like just to have the game on, like it wasn’t, it wasn’t top of like, all of my attention was devoted to it.

[01:03:54] Like also don’t feel bad if you miss a game, like that’s [01:04:00] this, this team’s not, not, not worth it. Not right now to be like diehard fan where you have to watch every single game or you feel like you’re

[01:04:08] Dustin: this isn’t the year to do that. Like, no, no, this is the, because of this. One of us needs to watch these damn games.

[01:04:17] So I, I watch every game, but it’s like, Like, if we’re losing by 25, I’m playing grand theft auto while I’m watching. I could,

[01:04:26] Sage: I still probably would watch every game, but it’s has been,

[01:04:31] Dustin: oh, I have, did we do our uglies? I don’t remember. Yes we did. Can I add another ugly? Ugly, Jr. Yeah. Well, this might be ugly senior to be completely honest, ugly.

[01:04:42] The third, like this is the first, like the ugly that I said that I don’t remember. Paul’s injury. Let’s secondary actually on, on charter, I guess it’s spectrum. There’s the HD and the standard. Standard Def is [01:05:00] on both. There’s no HD on spectrum cable right in Southern Oregon. So we go from, you know, the, the base channel to the HD, same fucking thing.

[01:05:10] There’s the big black bar surrounding it on both. And then sometimes on the HD channel, you get the perfect HT. No sound so fuck root sports.

[01:05:22] Sage: Sorry, Norman pal. Sorry he got hurt, but I need my H D you are the ugly senior. This is

[01:05:28] Dustin: watching fucking two thousands basketball, man. I’m like. I need, like, I remember you texting me.

[01:05:35] Why is and Fox so mad? I was fucking fine now. I can’t see shit with this standard definition. So yeah, that’s my ugly fucking Christ rule sports, then it doesn’t, it, it says it’s cracking on the, you know, the, the scroller it’s like cracking inside crack and it’s not blazers basketball. So you got to know when the games start to watch it.

[01:05:57] It’s

[01:05:57] Sage: such a yes. Um, [01:06:00] every, everything has been a mess. Uh, so self care is to put yourself first. And if you don’t want to, if you don’t want to deal with it, don’t feel bad. Find other things to do. Uh, Anything, but laxed and by anything, it’s read a book, go for a walk, listen to the game, watch the game. Don’t take it too serious.

[01:06:23] Watch other games, uh, watch just for players like the Greg brown dunk at the end of the Denver game was the best thing I saw a week. Like that was, that was sick. And that’s actually my good junior is the Greg brown dunk. And one thing that I’m going to add to my bad is Chauncey Billups, not standing up for his youngster.

[01:06:44] He had a chance when asked about his thoughts. To really champion Greg and say, yeah, I thought that was awesome. But he said, no, I probably wouldn’t have done it in my day due to the unwritten rules. Well, you know what? Fuck unwritten rules. If unwritten rules were so sacred, [01:07:00] guess what? They would be written, quit being old curmudgeons and let the kids have fun.

[01:07:06] NBA basketball is sports and entertainment. And what Greg brown did was sports and it was really fucking entertaining. So I salute you Greg brown, uh, to do pull off an east bay funk end game was absolutely ridiculous. Keep doing it. I don’t care if it pisses off Chauncey Billups one iota.

[01:07:27] Dustin: Yeah. I mean, I it’s weird. Like, you know, when I’m with my family, my mom or my brother asks about the other coats and I’ll bring up like, you know, some random thing I’ve seen or, you know, like whatever. And then, um, I’ll be like, yeah, but I would die. Fucking any coach on this team like, oh, we’re playing the new Orleans.

[01:07:51] Like, yeah, they’re really bad. I would kill that. Billy Green, like I fucking hate watching Chauncey Billups, his teams [01:08:00] play basketball. I can’t even like it’s elementary shit that he doesn’t get. And it pisses me the fuck

[01:08:09] Sage: off. It’s the risk you take when you hire a brand new head coach, but real quick Sage about these unwritten rules.

[01:08:17] I’m curious as to when they, when like scoring, when the game was already wrapped up, became taboo. Because as I mentioned, I watched a ton of old blazer basketball. Clyde Drexler would do that shit all the time. Like he would just go down and dunk on teams and nobody cared. They kind of just like shook hands after the game.

[01:08:34] It just seems like only in the past, like 10 or 15 years that people are like all up in arms when somebody tries to dunk and like, I really don’t care. Like maybe don’t get your ass kicked. Yeah.

[01:08:44] Dustin: I remember when Russ got mad at, uh, Bagley. No, not Bagley. Uh, one of the Oklahoma city guys from stealing the ball and running it down Paisley, I knew it had a B and an a I’m like dog.

[01:08:59] Don’t get your, [01:09:00] don’t blow the lead to the worst team in existence right now. Like, I don’t know, man, like, isn’t this about entertainment? Like, yes. Like I feel like NBA basketball is two things. Entertainment business and relationship business. Like if you, you, you want to make this thing as entertaining as possible.

[01:09:27] So this unwritten rule, bullshit,

[01:09:31] Sage: starting to sound like old white man

[01:09:32] Dustin: baseball, let the kids have fun. I like, I truly don’t care that Greg brown was disrespectful. I’m glad

[01:09:44] Sage: he was disrespectful.

[01:09:45] Dustin: Where are we kicking their ass? The fact that Greg brown is in the game right now is disrespectful enough to you.

[01:09:51] Like, let’s be real Greg brown. Shouldn’t see a minute of game time. If this was a competitive game, he wouldn’t be in do your work in the [01:10:00] first 47 minutes of the game instead of getting mad at he’s 19 years old. Yeah. Expressing themselves. The fact that he’s made kind of a brand about the east bay funk dunk.

[01:10:12] Good for him. He’s not making that much money in comparison to every other player on the team, letting me create a brand around it, man. Like how many people have done it? Like Ricky Davis,

[01:10:24] Sage: not many Josh Smith.

[01:10:29] Dustin: That’s dope. I want to buy the top shot. Like that should be his rookie moment. That would be, probably will be

[01:10:39] Sage: Sage let’s. Look ahead. A four game home, stand coming up for the trailblazers. They play a back-to-back against the Detroit pistons. The pistons who have number one, pick Kate Cunningham on the roster or four and 16 on the season.

[01:10:52] Second worst in the Eastern conference. And they sport just a two and eight record away from the motor city. They are currently on a [01:11:00] six game losing streak. What does Portland have to look out for when it comes to playing the Detroit business? Is it really just a let down because it’s a weaker opponent or is there something schematically or is there a matchup that, that could get Portland fits?

[01:11:14] I

[01:11:14] Dustin: think Kate Cunningham size could be a really big problem. He’s like a six, seven point guard. I mean, right now I haven’t looked at his stats in a minute since I’ve been at my mom’s, but. At the beginning of the year, he was like at an all time bad shooter, but in college he was a 40%, three point shooter.

[01:11:33] So eventually it’s going to normalize where he is hitting threes. And what I think is awesome about Kate Cunningham currently is that he’s getting all the other stats. Like he’s getting seven rebounds getting eight assists. Once the shooting comes, he’s going to be a fucking problem. And you know what the get right game going into the Portland trailblazers.

[01:11:55] When you’re the one with the ball in your hand, who is going to guard Kate Cunningham, [01:12:00] they run a tall lineup like Kate Cunningham, six, seven, Siddique bay 6, 8, 2 re grant six, eight. Like they have a lot of long lengthy lanky dudes. How are we going to stop this team on the offense events? Since we have four, well, three right now, six, three guards.

[01:12:18] How are we going to play defense? So I think the matchup between the wing guards and wings is going to be the biggest matchup is eyes

[01:12:26] Sage: to see who matches Isaiah Stuart’s energy. Yeah,

[01:12:30] Dustin: blue dude. We were so wrong on him as a player because he did not show this potential at U dub. No, he didn’t. No, he, I like him.

[01:12:40] Like I like this team. I watched him when Kelly, Uber or no, Kelly Olynyk was running center. This is a fun team. They’re bad, but they’re going to play athletic. They’re going to play hard. They have three point of attack defenders. We don’t have one.

[01:12:56] Sage: Portland Ben takes on the San Antonio spurs [01:13:00] on Thursday.

[01:13:01] The spurs are six and 13, currently 12 in the Western conference. Again, not a good road team, two and seven away from San Antonio, but they have won two straight games. Sage, this isn’t your mom’s or your grandma’s San Antonio spurs. A lot of new faces and not many familiar ones, but there is one in Dijon, Tim Murray that you mentioned

[01:13:24] Dustin: my boy.

[01:13:25] Yeah. He’s like, he, again, a lot of my studying is about production. My man is sales up the stat sheet. Every category he gets like 18 points, seven rebounds, eight assists gets two steals. Like he fills up that box score. Oh, God damn he’s played great defense. Like Deontay is one of my favorite players in the league right now.

[01:13:53] He is, he is a fucking menace to society on the defensive end. Like I [01:14:00] don’t think there are a good team right now, but, uh, D Jontay’s great. Uh, Jake puddle, uh, Jaco Pearl is a very good defensive center. Don’t like the name might be a little goofy, but do can block some shots. He is a good defender and

[01:14:16] Sage: blazer fans.

[01:14:17] Remember Yaka hurdle from last year’s MLK game working single-handedly shifted momentum, everyone on the boards. This is kind of a tricky game because Popovich teams always play hard and they can get on you, especially with they’ve Kelda Johnson as well, who played on the Olympic team,

[01:14:40] Dustin: Devon Purcell. My boy, um, Shit.

[01:14:45] I had a really good point. I had a really good point, um, kit. Oh, Greg Popovich is a really good coach too. They have, they, they definitely went on the, uh, the coaching front. [01:15:00] That was not my good point. They’re ag. They actually are pretty tall team two with Derek white being the two, um, Kelvin, they just

[01:15:11] Sage: smacked.

[01:15:12] Oh no, no, whatever by 17

[01:15:14] Dustin: tonight, you know who I want on that? If you know who I want, Neil or whoever the GM is to trade for. I want that he is young on my team. I think he,

[01:15:26] Sage: I think a lot of contending teams are going to go off without ESPN.

[01:15:29] Dustin: I think he would be pretty perfect for that vet role. He’s a legitimately good player.

[01:15:35] Still. If you watch the bulls last year, he was the who’s was the X-Factor for that team. He doesn’t get as much run as he should. I think San Antonio, the deadlines should trade him. And I would love for him to fill that vet role for the Portland trailblazers

[01:15:50] Sage: up next will be the Boston Celtics who are off to a Rocky start as well, 11 and 10 on the season, currently 11th in the Eastern conference, 500 on the [01:16:00] road with six victories and they have one, a one in a row.

[01:16:04] They do have size on the wing, which we know gives Portland fits stage. What should Portland to be on the lookout for?

[01:16:13] Dustin: This is one of the games where use of NERC. It needs to play 30 plus minutes. The one weakness, well, many weaknesses for the Celtics, but the one that was most glaring for the longest time, bad rebounding game, Houston NERC is a top 10 rebounder in the league, according to the jazz, uh, announcers.

[01:16:33] So I’ll believe them. I think using the irrigant G needs to put his imprint on this game from jump, um, Daymond, CJ are going to be better than Marcus smart and Dennis Schroeder, but where I want to see us really focus is on those boards, gang rebounding, boxing out, making sure that the, that a net defensive rebounding team is a net against them.

[01:16:57] I mean, Jason Tatum this year [01:17:00] has been his most inefficient, and I think it’s a lot of his favorite players, Kobe. So he’s taking a lot of Kobe Bryant shots. Like he is not dunking. He is not going

[01:17:11] Sage: to have 16 and their victory, their most recent victory against the Toronto Raptors.

[01:17:17] Dustin: Who’s their general, who’s the general manager.

[01:17:19] Now those grad students. Thank you. Brad Stevens did a lot of good plays for Jason Tatum last year. Um, Jason datum doesn’t finish around the rim. Well, when there’s contact. So he would do this, uh, he would do this play where Daniel pies set the screen on his guy and he would just run. I don’t see email doing that as much.

[01:17:41] So like, I think that Jason Tatum wants to be Koby. He’s not getting the plays call for him that allow him to have those easy baskets. So he might have, he might have that, uh, assuming game against us, but. Right now he’s playing at his most inefficient ever. But what I [01:18:00] really want to see is us focusing on those boards and Al Horford has really, really messed up production for time.

[01:18:06] Lord, I did not think that was going to happen, but Al Horford is the better player right

[01:18:12] Sage: now, 17 and 11 on over 50% shooting against,

[01:18:17] Dustin: oh, he took a vacation from it while he was an OKC and decided to be a good player. It’s crazy to see when you’re happy, playing basketball a lot better,

[01:18:25] Sage: like a fine wine I’ll Horford is just getting better with age.

[01:18:29] They have a team that really worries me in terms of they have a, a guy in Dennis shrewder who can take over off of the bench. They have a guy in Marcus smart who plays with a lot of hustle and heart and can a really, really. A lot of, uh, I think a lot of the looks Portland’s looking to get from the back court, you mentioned, uh, Robert Williams and Al Horford.

[01:18:54] They’ve got size and rebounding and defense. And then it’s just the wings. When you look at Jaylen brown and Jason [01:19:00] Tatum boldly and go Jaylen brown. So they’ve got those wings that can take over a game and we have no sides. We have nobody to guard either player. I’m

[01:19:11] Dustin: not saying

[01:19:13] Sage: this is going to be, and they also have Josh Richardson off the bench too.

[01:19:16] Like, so they have a lot of talent. Um, they’re just starting to figure out how to play together. This could be a really good test for the blazers, the last game of the week for Portland. Ooh. The LA Clippers on the 6th of December, it’ll be the fourth and final match up against the Clippers. Uh, Portland is down to one in the series right now.

[01:19:42] The Clippers are fourth in the Western conference, uh, 11 and nine on the season, just two and four away from staple center. So they haven’t played too many games away from Los Angeles, uh, lost one game, but w we know they have been good at home against Portland. Portland had their [01:20:00] way. Despite Paul George going for 42 in the first game in the row city, uh, batoon broke out last game.

[01:20:09] Luke canards had his way in one of the first two games. I’m just thinking of all of the different ways the Clippers have kind of given us fits. Yes. And of course, Paul George. So they are kind of putting it together. And I said this on one of the earlier episodes, but despite the injury, the Clippers are treating this season.

[01:20:32] Like they’re contending. Like they feel like they are in the upper echelon of the NBA and they know that once they get Kauai, Leonard back, they are a threat. So even without Kauai, their best player, they’re still holding it down, fighting and believing because they have that hope. I don’t see that same mentality from a healthy Portland roster.

[01:20:55] So it’ll be interesting to see with this being the fourth match-up [01:21:00] that basically it’ll make the. Even in the tie-breaker with other scenarios would would say, who has a Tyberg that Portland has to get this win with the west being so tight four through 10. So this is the most important game of the week for me.

[01:21:15] Is there anything that we’ve, haven’t seen over the first three games that you’re looking for or is there something that you think could rear its ugly head and be of be of menace to the trouble?

[01:21:26] Dustin: I think Serge Ibaka being backed. I don’t, I don’t remember him being there for the first, at least first two.

[01:21:32] He might’ve been back in a little bit at capacity, but think about the Clippers defense, Paul, George man.

[01:21:42] Sage: Uh, I forgot Terrence man. Yeah. Terrence man basically saved them against the Utah jazz and the post-season last year. He can go out for 30 on a gift that night. I

[01:21:50] Dustin: think they’re guys don’t talk much.

[01:21:52] And Serge Ibaka is a very vocal, so having a guide. I can speak and talk to the fizz defense. That could be a [01:22:00] new level of like rotations and defensive pressure to have served, uh, back. So maybe a better defense from them, better initial attack, better rotation. So that might be the one, but I mean, we played them so many times in the first month and a half of the season that we know what they’re doing and they know what we’re doing.

[01:22:19] So who can out execute the. Yeah,

[01:22:22] I

[01:22:22] Sage: think it’s going to come down to role-players in this one. Uh, Isaiah Hartenstein came off the bench and had 14 points on six of seven shooting. The last meeting of bucket did play just only five minutes, but Nicholas platoon had 22 points. And I believe that was the first, the announcer said that was his first 20 point gain in something like four seasons.

[01:22:41] Dustin: So

[01:22:44] Sage: if, if you’re getting those type of productions from unexpected sources who is going to match that on Portland’s end, is that going to be an Anthony Simons? Are you going to get a big game for him to see her or Tony snow or is Covington going to do what you did again? Gives the Indiana Pacers can come up [01:23:00] clutch with three after three.

[01:23:01] Is Larry Nance going to go six or seven? So who on Portland’s I think unexpected player list can exceed or you just met. The Clippers and then let Dame and CJ and norm, if Norm’s back by this point, really do what they can against PG. And Reggie,

[01:23:20] Dustin: is this a use of nourish cam? I don’t

[01:23:23] Sage: think so

[01:23:25] Dustin: because he can match Zhou, botch pretty easily.

[01:23:29] And then Hartenstein, he could defend too. Are we going to see, uh, 28 plus minutes played?

[01:23:38] Sage: I mean, he played 27 in the last game and he had good. He had a great game, statistically, you know, 15, 13, 6 dimes, only two turnovers, only missed three shots, but yet you look at. The final Purim, Portland Gibbs up one 17 and their bigs were busy.

[01:23:54] Isaiah, Hertenstein a lot of work against the Portland trailblazers.

[01:23:58] Dustin: I remember it was [01:24:00] mostly pick and roll and like again, not use as responsibility on that.

[01:24:05] Sage: Teams are making Portland pay for playing cards. Yeah. Covington can’t cover everything. So, um, I honestly think this needs to be a game where Portland just gets something out of Robert Covington.

[01:24:23] Like he, if you’re going to start, you can’t be two of eight. You can’t be oh three. He’s going to have to keep the defenses honest. So it allows a little bit of wiggle room, at least shoot the damn ball. Yeah. And then my other X-Factor is Norman Powell. If we, again, remember go back to that game. He was on fire dribbling to the basket, taking the, his man off the, off the, off the bounce, getting to the cup, easy bucket.

[01:24:49] Chauncey sits him and sits him and sits him. He comes in it’s too late. The tide has turned and Portland completely went away, uh, from Norman Powell and the game was lost. [01:25:00] So, um, I think those two things Portland’s forward starting forward. W what are you going to get from them? And I think they really need to look at how he can take his man in feed him.

[01:25:12] Like, just like we talked about the Oregon ducks earlier on making things harder for themselves, the blazers do the exact same thing, something working it’s like now let’s, let’s just try something else. Like just for the hell of it. That’s what they like to do. No, go to the, well, keep going to the, well until that shit dries out.

[01:25:30] Dustin: All right. You have your wrap this up. Um, we are available on iTunes, Stitcher, Himalaya podcast, dash radio, nothing but net radio, Tuesdays two to three, four to five Eastern, and be good to each other. And we’re out of here.

[01:25:52] Wherever you may be. This is bill shine. Good night. Eh, everybody.[01:26:00]

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