Thursday, April 2, 2009

Comments and Links

Hey guys, sorry for the hiatus. I usually write my blog on my lunch hour, but unfortunately I have been having to work thru my lunches. So I will try to blog as much as possible, especially during the dog days of the regular season!

First of all I want to give a shoutout to Matt, who left one of the, if not the best, comments ever on this blog. For those of you that missed it, check out the “Blazers Draft Needs” post. I want to counter some of his points on this post however, so below are excerpts from Matt’s post.

With Pryz as the backup center you already have the toughest backup center in the league, do we need a banger at the PF and the center spot? I think bumping Outlaw to the backup PF makes a nice second unit with Bayless/Sergio, Rudy, Batum/Webster, Outlaw, Joel. It will also provide rest to LaMarcus, which he needs, because he already plays a team high minutes and will allow Outlaw to have the constant mismatch advantage that he thrives with.

I agree that have a banger of a PF seems redundant when you have Przy with the 2nd unit, but between the injury concerns of Oden and Przy, I would just feel more comfortable having at least one more big that could play physical. Basically Matt, if Oden or Przy went down, even for a few games, that would leave us with Outlaw as our backup C? We are hinging a lot by not securing that backup PF role. And while I do like Outlaw at the 4 sometimes, he doesn’t fit into that mold all the time. Kevin Pritchard has always said that he wants to give Nate a lot of different types of guys with multiple talents so he can have as many options as possible. I think the next logical step is getting a physical big man.

Then even if Webster never really breaks out we still have Batum who is awesome and will some hard work and dedication over the summer could become a really really good starting SF for us. His potential is just awesome and even Michael Jordan said that Batum reminds him of a young Scottie Pippen. This is the position that I feel like Pritchard should just leave be for at least one more season. I want to see Webster and Batum battle it out as well as grow more as players.

First of all, anyone that knows me knows that I am a Jordan fan, but I am not going to take player potential advice from the GM of the Bobcats (Adam Morrison 3rd overall anyone? Kwame Brown?). But I do think that Nicolas Batum is the future SF of this team. He brings to the table everything we are looking for. He makes a ton of intangible plays that cannot be measured on a stat sheet. Yes, his jumpshot is shaky, but he is only 20 years old! Think how much better it will get with time! If I had to pick one of our 3 SF’s to keep, it would be Batum hands down.

I don't know much about the PG market or the PG's in the draft but since we have drafted backup PG's 2 out of the last 3 drafts shouldn't we look for one in the market now? Or maybe Bayless can just start dominating sooner, that would be nice.

I agree that our backup PG situation is one of concern. I think the writing is on the wall, and as soon as we get a hint of anyone better, Sergio is gone. I highly doubt Sergio will be in a Blazers uniform at the beginning of next season. However, I do not really think Bayless is ready to assume that backup role full time. So that poses another question. Do you let Bayless play, and fight through the bumps and brusies of having an inexperienced SG turned PG (a la Jarrett Jack?) Or do you draft/sign someone to either start, effectively making Blake the backup, or fill that backup role? What stage are we at in our development as a team? I think next year we will seriously be in the hunt for chance to get to the title game. With all that on the line, can we afford to let Bayless learn on the go?

All tough questions that are going to be tough for KP to answer this summer.

Moving on there has been some good stuff about our Blazers in the media. Here is my linkage!

ESPN’s David Thorpe had a cool article today about who rookies should look to emulate in the league. He mentioned 3 of our 4 rookies. Check out who he said and why:

Justify Full

Jerryd Bayless to Kobe Bryant

To me, Bayless always looks too cool. That's a problem for a young guy who hasn't performed consistently in the few times he's gotten a chance to play. I'd rather see red-hot passion in someone getting spot minutes. And nobody plays with more passion than Kobe, who is willing to take risks and brings great desire to the court.

Even though Bayless is in a much different position than Kobe is, he could still emulate those attributes.

Greg Oden to Dwight Howard

Oden should be taking notes from Howard, who is overwhelmingly successful and popular, and whose love for competing is apparent with how much fun he has playing this game.

Oden has a sparkling personality off the floor, but he tends to be quiet and unassuming on it. Imagine Oden playing with the fire and passion of Howard; Portland did when it drafted him.

Rudy Fernandez to Manu Ginobli

Both guys are artists with the ball, in terms of their shot-making talents. But while Ginobili constantly shows his gifts with mad slashes to the rim, Fernandez normally relies just on his perimeter shooting. He does that mostly because that is how Portland has designed his role, but for him to reach another level of production, he needs to be more of a scorer than a shooter.

Check out the whole thing here, but I must warn you, it's mostly just for insiders!

And in case you have been missing it, Jason Quick from the Oregonion has been doing a series called “Behind the Locker Room Door” after every game. These stories are awesome and are my favorite read after a game. Check them out on when you get a chance.

1 comment:

  1. I love the "Behind the Locker Room Door" articles as well. The one after the Milwaukee game was a classic. Bill Simmons gave props to JQuick for his thorough and creative use of access to the team as well.

    As for the offseason PF signings you bring up a good point for depth. Brandon Bass, Chris Wilcox, and Drew Gooden seem like candidates for a bench backup PF/C position. I'm not sure what sort of pay raises those 3 might be expecting or what their market value is but if we could sign them for their current salary they could be a valuable position.

    Ryan brought up a good point about signing Bibby as a possible PG, but he could be expensive. I also have doubts as to how he could fit in. Blake has performed pretty well as the starter, would Bibby want to be on the second unit?

    If Jordan had drafted Batum it would have been his best move as a GM yet.

    Keep posting Kyle, I have to have something to distract me in chemistry/biology.