Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Blazers Roster Breakdown

The Blazers are not nearly as compelling to watch as the Spurs, but still have a solid team on the floor this season.

Aldridge is a BEAST.  He plays HARD.  He is a really big guy.  He is built kinda weird and looks slow and plodding but he moves deceptively well.  When he is backing guys down in the post, he is slamming into them.  He is a bruiser.  He also has a deft touch.  Every shot he took not looked good and he looked confident taking them.  Another odd thing I noticed is he really trusts his teammates' shooting abilities.  Many times after someone shot a 3, he would just immediately start running back on defense and be at half court as the ball hit the rim.  That's great you trust your teammates and all, but it also explains why his rebounding numbers aren't what they should be.  I would know as I had him last year on my fantasy team.

Lillard looks good.  He is real fast and tiny.  He makes some silly mistakes, but he is a rook so those poor decisions will improve in time.  He has a nice shot as well.  Definite all-star in the making.

Batum has potential to be great.  We know he is a good defender  and all his FGM are swishes.  However, the reason I said he has potential to be great is he does really dumb things with the ball.  He forces shots and takes really awkward ones.  It is perplexing.  It's almost like he just drives without thinking or having any plan of attack or contingency plan.  Then, he has to instantly create a shot at the last second which is impossible because he is so skinny and can't create separation through contact.  He must think he is like Melo, because he does that like one of the best.  He is also a toothpick and could give Tayshaun Prince a run for his money.  Wonder what Juan Carlos Navarro thinks of him.

Batum ball punch
Even Napoleon would be proud of this French attack on Spain

Wesley Matthews just plays it cool.  I like him (had him last year on my fantasy squad as well).  He seems like a cool guy, knows his role, and just does his thing.  Sweet, sweet shot.

Hickson had a monster game against the Wizards.  15 and 19!  Dunks and put-back slams.  He seems like a spaz but he gets it done.  From what I have read, he is a nut job, so I assume they are hoping Meyers Leonard has a light bulb moment.

Leonard looks like he is 12, but he is a big dude.  He showed some flashes of a developing and varied post game.  At one point, he got the ball at the foul line, drove the lane and elevated with an outstretched arm looking like he was going to Harrison Barnes someone hardcore and throw the hammer down, but then he just went soft and threw up some goofy flick shot.  I'll tell ya though man - when that move started, I, along with my entire section started going "Ohhhhh....." and prepared to jump up because it truly seemed like the dunk of the year was about to happen.  Everyone sensed it, and then nothing.

(Side note:  I was in the corner about eight rows behind the Portland bench and my entire section, save for a couple people at most, were all die-hard Blazers fans.  I don't know how that happened.)

I don't know anything about Will Barton, but he has some And1/Hot Sauce/Skip to my Lou moves.

Jared Jeffries is on the Blazers!  He also has a Chuck Liddell mohawk.  Some tool behind me all game loved yelling out "Yeah Jared Jeffries!"  and "You go Jared Jeffries!" and kept making Jared from Subway jokes.

Sasha Pavlovic just looks cool.  Such an odd thing to say, but I've always thought that about him while seeing him on TV, and in-person, it is just reinforced.  He has a great NBA body and pulls off the super-high black socks very well.  He just doesn't do anything of consequence.

Coach Stotts is a really tall guy.  The players seem to listen to him attentively on the bench, so that's a good thing.  He also walks out absurdly far to the other end of the court when walking the sidelines.

Portland appears to have a solid young core around Aldridge, complimented with some shooters and slashers.  They are a few years away from being serious contenders, but if Lillard, Leonard, and Batum continue to develop, this team could compete for a title sooner than later.  

Extra points for another solid alternate jersey this season.  Rip City continues their run of solid NBA uniforms without straying from their original red, black, and white color scheme.  This guy would be proud.  

Bill Walton FunnyBill Walton Beard

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