Brandon Roy's scoring 22 points a game for the Blazers
Tonight's Phoenix Suns versus Portland Trail Blazers game is not only an important matchup for the team's push toward Western Conference respectability, but it also marks the return of Suns Coach Terry Porter to the city where he starred.
The former point was a Blazer from 1985 to 1995, earning All-Star nominations in '91 and '93. Even to this day, Portland folks still give mad props to Porter's contributions, so much that his number 30 jersey was retired this week. Tonight's game will be Porter's first visit to Portland's Rose Garden as the Suns leader.
Portland hasn't been very good since its last playoff appearance during the 2002-03 season, mostly because of heavy competition in the stacked Western Conference. However, the 16-10 Blazers are experiencing a resurgence this season, thanks to shooting guard Brandon Roy (22 points a game), full-bodied center and former Minnesota Golden Gopher star Joel Przybilla, and seven-footer Greg Oden, who was injured last year and is playing his first pro season.
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Tip-off's at 8:30 p.m. tonight at Portland's Rose Garden Arena. National TV: TNT. Radio: KTAR-AM 620. -- Steve Jansen