The Blazers played the Rockets on TNT last night. There were a series of other great shows, like "The Office" and "30 Rock", to watch, but I take my Blazers where I can get them down here.
But since Arizona doesn't have Daylight Savings and we get up at 5:45 am, I soon realized I wasn't up for the entire game. At halftime, I decided to record the rest. The Blazers looked flat. With Greg Oden down, their confidence has been sapped. The crowd seemed soft at the beginning, too, and I wasn't surprised after hearing about a somber pre-game memorial to Kevin Duckworth. I lamented they needed a game-winner, like Travis Outlaw's bank shot in Memphis last year which sparked their 13 game winning streak. These guys are young, and maybe that would give them some swagger again.
I added another 30 minutes to the recording time, just in case the game went to overtime, and headed to bed.
After dropping Mindy off at work this morning, I flicked on the TV and fast forwarded to the game's 3 minute mark. The Blazers had squandered a 10 point lead and the game was dwindling away. The final moments were sloppy and the clock slipped away with the score still even. I applauded myself for thinking ahead.
On to overtime. The play remained a bit sloppy on the Blazers end, and I found myself unable to curse former Duck Aaron Brooks when he hit a driving layup for Houston with 3:47 remaining.
At 41 seconds left, Tracy McGrady hit a long jumpshot trying to draw a foul, almost as an afterthought, but LaMarcus Aldridge was fouled at the other end and hit both free throws to tie it. McGrady missed a jumper that would've given the Rockets the lead again, and the Blazers rebounded. Instead of calling the safe timeout, Brandon Roy drove to the other end, broke someone's ankles (Rafer Alson?), and calmly buried a 21-footer with 1.9 ticks to play.
It's not a crazy game-winner, I thought, but it'll do.
Houston called time-out, and I nervously checked how much time I had in my recording. The little arrow was perilously close to the end. Alston inbounded to Yao Ming on the baseline, who spun around with one of those insanely soft-handed fadeaways, Brandon Roy and Joel Pryzbilla draped all over him. The ball left his hands, arced...
And my recording ended.
I rushed online. Here's how it turned out.