Portland outlasted Phoenix 105-100 despite doing everything possible to lose in the final minute. Marcus Camby’s missed dunk stood out, but the Blazers also missed a handful of free throws and didn’t rotate well defensively. The Suns missed several open shots in the closing minute, including Steve Nash’s long 3 that would have tied the game with nine seconds remaining.
Andre Miller was dominant, scoring 31 points and dishing out eight assists. The Suns don’t have anyone who can, or at least wants to, prevent Miller from getting to the basket. Despite several missed free throws late, Jerryd Bayless played a huge roll in the Blazers win. Bayless scored 18 points while being defended primarily by Steve Nash.
Nicolas Batum had a number of big buckets and finished with 18 points. Camby collected 17 rebounds for the Blazers, who dominated the glass.
I’m still trying to figure out why Jared Dudley was on the floor late in the game instead of Barbosa. Dudley is a good 3-point shooter but had only one basket in the game–and missed a wide-open look from the corner with 45 seconds remaining.
This could be the best First-Round matchup in the playoffs. Game 2 is Tuesday in Phoenix.