Scott Halleran/Getty Images
Wow, talk about dominant.
The Portland Trail Blazers haven't made it past the first round of the playoffs since the 1999-00 season, and LaMarcus Aldridge has looked to end that streak.
The big man dropped 46 points in Game 1, then proceeded to score 43 points in Game 2 to steal home-court advantage away from the Houston Rockets. Aldridge's combination of smooth post skills, length and silky high-release jumper have proved too much for the opposing defense.
Even with Dwight Howard and Omer Asik down low, the power forward has bested the strength and size of both to be utterly potent on the offensive end.
Per ESPN.com, Aldridge became just the third player in NBA playoff history to put in 40 points or more on the road in Games 1 and 2 of a playoff series. The other two players? Michael Jordan and Tracy McGrady.
After netting the Blazers a pivotal Game 4 at home, Aldridge is averaging an NBA-high 35.3 points and 11.3 rebounds on 52.9 percent shooting.
He also had key blocks down the stretch, including the rejection of James Harden's layup that would have given the Rockets the lead with nine seconds remaining in regulation.
It isn't a sure thing just yet, but Portland's comfortable 3-1 series lead against Houston is big enough to assume it'll advance to the second round. The Blazers will face either the San Antonio Spurs or the Dallas Mavericks, and you can bet Aldridge will look to continue his offensive dominance.
In any case, Aldridge's offensive brilliance thus far has been unpredictable. But, he's expected to play at a high level to keep his team competitive as an All-Star forward, so it isn't overwhelmingly startling and therefore limits his placing in these rankings.
But to make history? That's hardly on a to-do list.