Postgame notes and quotes: Blazers 103, Thunder 95

Official postgame quotes and notes following the Portland Trail Blazers 103-95 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday evening at the Rose Garden.


Monday, April 12, 2010 – Final Score: Portland 103, Oklahoma City 95

On Marcus Camby’s performance :
“Great. He’s been great since he’s joined the team. Last night he had a big tip in to be a deciding factor in that game. Tonight, just a great job of again controlling the paint on both sides of the court, rebounding the ball, defending the basket. He’s communicating, doing everything you would want a veteran to do. Both he and Howard since joining this club are bringing what we need at this time. Those guys understand the moment; they know how to play in the moment. Tonight, he knew it was a big game and he stepped up to the plate, shooting the ball, knocking down his free throws, defending the basket – great job.”

Is 50th win special?
“50 is. That’s a benchmark in this league for teams having a good year. When you’re able to win 50 games in this league, it’s tough. Everything these guys have gone through this year, they haven’t made excuses. They just come out and play. Today we got the news about Brandon and Rudy had to step in. Martell, our bench, we needed those guys. They just continue to play. They don’t make excuses. They continue to work and they get tighter and find ways to win games.”

Given circumstances, was this special?
“It’s special in the sense that we knew it was an important game. We get the tie breaker, it’s 50 wins for us, we can’t drop to 8th spot. So a lot was riding on this game. The fact that we had just beaten the Lakers and Brandon is out. We needed guys to step up and they did tonight. Yes, it was a special game. I thought the second half, we started to play our game. The defense tightened up. Offensively, we scored 60 points and we got 60 in the paint so we were aggressive throughout this game.”

Reaction to Roy’s situation:
“Just terrible. It’s been a bad year for us for injuries with our group. It’s just something we’ve had to deal with all year long. It seemed like every few hours it got worse. So we know what the situation is. We’ll rest him this week and see if he can go, see if he can do something. That’ll be depending on how Brandon feels… …We’ll see when that time comes if he can go. If not, making those adjustments – we’ve had to do it all year long. Again, guys have stepped up. Andre Miller – we haven’t said anything about him but he was unbelievable again tonight. LaMarcus is really stepping up and showing a leadership role. So this group has really tightened up as far as being together during adversity that they’ve faced all season long.”

“I’m just glad it’s over. That was a tough game for both teams. I think we had more energy in the second half.”

“It was just a good team effort. Camby fell into a lot of shots and offensive rebounding is something he’s been doing for a long time. It kind of kept us in a rhythm and got us some extra possessions and was able to block some shots down the stretch.”

On winning 50 games:
“With the amount of injuries, nobody really set and expectations, but they did have 54 last year. Look at it as we had a good year with all the injuries. If we did have everybody, we’d probably have had a better year. It says a lot about the character of the team.”

On avoiding the Lakers in the first round:
“If we did play the Lakers, I’d get a chance to go home, but now that we don’t, I don’t have to worry about people asking me for tickets. It says a lot about the character of the team how we played the second part of the season – Marcus coming over and definitely brining some stability to the middle.”

On crowd chanting Marcus Camby’s name:
“I’ve heard that before playing in Denver. Just knowing the type of character Marcus has, he definitely kept the team together tonight when we started to get away a little bit. He was energetic on both sides of the court.”


Monday, April 12, 2010 – Final Score: Portland 103, Oklahoma City 95

“We have to execute better. We have to cut harder, we’ve got to set better screens, we have to deliver the ball on time, that’s part of our growth, that’s part of our team getting better, and that’s an area we need to improve on, that’s no question. When you play against a tough team like Portland, they are going to demand that you do that, otherwise you aren’t going to get good looks, and you can’t rely on acrobatic shots to get your offense going.”

“This is one of the greatest buildings in the league. It is live, it is loud, and they really get behind their team, and they should it’s a good team to cheer for, but it’s an opportunity for us to play against an environment like we did tonight. It’s going to help the growth of our team and it’s getting us ready for the Playoffs. This was a Playoff atmosphere, a Playoffs style of game, physical game, every possession mattered, every defensive possession was very critical in importance for the outcome of the game. I was pleased with our effort. Obviously you want to win but the effort was good enough to win we just didn’t get it done at the end.”

“I have insight into Marcus Camby and Andre Miller; I coached them for 3 years, those guys are winners, they are winners. They know how to play. That was a great pick up by Kevin and Nate to get those guys. (They are) great teammates, coachable, play hard, and have been in so many Playoff series. Those guys, they win.”

“It’s a great opportunity for us. We’re playing against a lot of the best team in the NBA, the defending champs, the best player, one of the greatest coaches of all times in all of sports, it’s a great opportunity for our guys to go out there and compete.”

“Every possession was played hard and that is what the Playoffs are going to be like and we have to be better down the stretch.”

“I think our guys will be alright. We’ve played well in tough situations; we’ve had big games on the road. Other than stressing the importance of our execution, you can’t skip any steps, you have to set your man up, you have to set the screens at the right angle, and the pass has to be on time. When the defense is picked up and they scout you so much more intense, intensely like they do in Playoffs, you’ve got to be able to execute. You can’t skip any steps. I try to pass that on…We need to sharpen a lot of things up. Defensively, we’ve had some slippage. We need to get back to making the second and third effort on plays…We’ll play hard and come out in the Playoffs and bring everything we’ve got and see what happens.“

“I missed shots. It happens. I can’t go perfect from the field. It is what it is. I had some looks that I thought should’ve went down but didn’t…We’ve got to pick up the effort, it’s all about learning…(I’ve learned) that we need to play with that intensity no matter what. We had a 10 point lead, but it doesn’t mean anything, especially on the road, so we need to continue to play with that intensity and that sense of urgency for 48 minutes.”


Portland 103, Oklahoma City 95
April 12, 2010

— Tonight marked the 111th straight Trail Blazers sellout at the Rose Garden (including playoffs), dating back to Dec. 21, 2007.

— With tonight’s win, Portland (50-31) is guaranteed to finish ahead of Oklahoma City (49-32) in the Western Conference standings, leading the Thunder by one game with one game each to play and holding a tiebreaker by virtue of a 3-1 series win … The Trail Blazers will be seeded no lower than seventh, and a win Wednesday vs. Golden State will assure them of the sixth seed by virtue of a 3-0 series win over San Antonio (50-31).

— The Trail Blazers have posted back-to-back 50-win seasons for the first time since 1999-2000 and 2000-01.

— Portland’s 33 wins against the Western Conference are its most in a season since 1999-2000 (38).

— The Trail Blazers are now 19-7 after the All-Star break … With a win Wednesday vs. Golden State, Portland would complete its best second half (by percentage) in franchise history, a mark set last season (22-8).

— Portland finishes an NBA-best 15-4 (12-3 on road) in the second games of back-to-backs this season … The Trail Blazers are also 9-4 when playing against teams in second game of back-to-back situations.

— Marcus Camby’s 30 points are a new season high (23, LAC vs. Phoenix, Oct. 28) and his most since scoring 33 on Dec. 2, 2005 (Denver vs. Phoenix) … His high as a Trail Blazer was 17 points (March 25 vs. Dallas) … Camby led the Trail Blazers in scoring for the first time … He grabbed double figures in rebounds for the 10th time in 12 games and the 46th time this season … His double-double was his fifth during his time in Portland.

— Rudy Fernandez started tonight for the first time this season and fifth time in his two-year NBA career … Fernandez becomes the 14th Trail Blazer to start at least one game this year … Portland used its 15th different starting five of the season, and has won at least one game with 12 of them.

— The Trail Blazers are now 8-8 this season in 16 games played without Brandon Roy … Portland is 3-0 in games in which Roy has left due to injury (Jan. 13 vs. Milwaukee, Jan. 20 at Philadelphia, April 11 at L.A. Lakers).

— Portland’s games missed due to injury increased to 307 tonight, more than 100 more than last season’s total (205) … Thirteen different Trail Blazers have missed at least one game, including 16 games or more missed by eight players.

— Portland finishes the season 14-11 against the other seven playoff-bound teams in the West, including five series wins.

— Portland has won 13 of its last 16 games and 16 of the last 20 to improve to 50-31, a season-high 19 games over .500.

— Tonight marks the 200th game of the series between these franchises, with the series tied, 100-100.

— The Trail Blazers have won the season series over the Thunder in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 2001-02 and 2002-03 … Portland has won six of the past seven games in the series with the Thunder.

— Before tonight, the road team had won each game in the series and neither team had scored more than 92 points in any of the three series games.

— The Trail Blazers have allowed fewer than 100 points to 15 straight opponents at the Rose Garden … Portland limited an opponent to fewer than 100 points for the 58th time overall this year (44-14), the most by any team in the Western Conference.

— The Trail Blazers made 12 free throws to the Thunder’s three in fourth quarter, after Oklahoma City had gained a 25-8 advantage in the category through three quarters.

— Portland’s 60 points in the paint are tied for a season high (Jan. 30 at Dallas).

— Andre Miller’s four steals matched a season high (three other times).

— Both teams grabbed eight offensive rebounds, but Portland carried an 18-4 advantage in second-chance scoring.

— Portland scored the first 10 points of the second half to lead, 53-51, with 9:06 to play in the third quarter for the first time since the 2:05 mark of the first quarter.

— Kevin Durant scored 30 points or more for the 46th time this season.

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