Search for meaning in Blazers' finale is largely fruitless

By Matt Calkins, Columbian Sports Reporter

Published:

 

The metal detector is out and ... searching ... searching ... nothing.

OK, it’s not exactly a metal detector — more of a device that locates meaning in the Trail Blazers’ final game of the season.

Searching ... searching ... still nothing.

Portland is in Utah on Thursday night, and, well, nothing is on the line. A win or a loss does not affect where the Blazers fall in the draft lottery, nor does a win or loss affect whether Utah will make the playoffs. Spoiler is not a role anybody can be playing.

Searching ... searching ... wait a minute, we may have something here.

The Blazers have dropped all three games to the Jazz this year. A four-game sweep at the hands of a division rival is never a pleasant feeling.

Besides, when Wesley Matthews was asked what was left to play for when the postseason became an impossibility, he referenced his former team and said, “can’t get swept by Utah.”

So there’s that.

Searching ... searching ... whoa — something else?!

Yes, Luke Babbitt is very much alive to win the 3-point title.

Currently shooting .456 from deep, the forward needs to make two more 3-pointers to qualify for a spot among the league leaders. The Knicks’ Steve Novak leads the league at .468. If Babbitt goes 2 for 2, he would shoot up to .473 (he is 42 of 92 as is stands). Possible? Absolutely.

Searching ... searching ...

OK, there is pride as well. The Blazers have lost six consecutive games, the second-longest skid in the league (although way behind Charlotte’s 21). To go out with a win would provide their palates with a hint of sugar to counter an otherwise sour taste.

Matt Calkins can be contacted at 360-735-4528 or matt.calkins@columbian.com