Oh man was that a needed W. And this came after Portlands repeated attempts not to easily concede to consistently fihgt on every poccession. Serious credit to Portland but with Denver losing to Houston it became more and more obvious the Dubs simply couldn't lose. Excellent Defense forcing a lot of Portland turnovers 6 in the 2nd, 5 in the 3rd made the 8th spot a little more secure.
Defense The intensity in the 1st half was something we haven't seen in a lot of Warriors Basketball this season. Lemarcus Aldridge for large parts was totally anonoymous. When the 1st quarter ended Portland walked back to their bench shooting 32% overall, with Roy going 1-6 and Aldridge going 2 for 7. Then as soon as the 2nd and 3rd commenced Travis Outlaw, Steve Blake and Brandon Roy stepped up. Blake actually didn'tr attempt a shot in the 1st half before connecting with an eas9 in the 3rd. Brandon Roy although fun to watch lit us up for 12 in the 3rd and even Traivis Outlaw connected for 15.
Starters It was fun to see Ellis, Wright and Jackson as starters. Even though Wright missed a couple of dunks the confidence and belief he has in himself is quite noticable. His 8 point 6 boards were a statement and even Nelson should admit after another dismal Webber showing Wright should get more minutes . There is a ton of raw talent in this kid and I for one can't wait to see how he takes adavantage. Much like i expected Jackson showed up to play. An excellent 6-11 from the distance, 9 boards, 2 swats, and 29 points overall. Beast. Monta had another solid showing and with each game he's clearly outdoing himself. His 22 points, 10 boards (4 of them offensive!), and 6 dimes tonight just confirms how far he's come. Baron although he wasn't anything special still got a lot of rest before the 4 game road trip and that has to be considered a bonus. Of course last but not least Pietrus desrves props for a 4th conseutive solid showing. He hustled harder then normal on Defense and he's developing much more of a baseline 3. Hopefully this trend continues
Safest place for Roy all evening!
Intensity The Warriors really wanted this win aomething that has been lacking in just a couple of games this season. With Houston doing us a favour motivation was high. Games such as the 76ers and Sonics can and should be taken care off but against playoff caliber teams like Portland a message should be sent. Tonights win was big enough because with a big road trip coming up. We're an incredible 14 games over .500 and yet there is still zero room for us to slow down. With Jackson, Webber and Biedrins banged up and Davis in a slump this road trip takes on greater importance. If the bench players step up things can only go further.