11-28-13: You know who is really fun to watch? The Suns. And Goran Dragic. And Eric Bledsoe. FUN! The Phoenix Suns have won three of their last four games – all without Bledsoe who has missed five straight- to improve to 8-7 on the year. The Suns beat a very good Portland Trail Blazers team on Wednesday night 120-106 behind 31 points and 10 assists from Goran Dragic and 25 points from the rejuvenated Channing Frye. The Suns may not be able to sustain the winning over the course of the long season, but once Bledsoe returns and he teams up with Dragic in the backcourt, it will certainly remain fun to watch.
11-22-13: The surprise team of the 2013-2014 season so far just keeps winning. The Portland Trail Blazers are sitting on an eight-game winning streak and a 10-2 record that has them holding the third best record in the league. While the only team they’ve beaten with a winning record is the San Antonio Spurs, you still have to give this team credit for picking up W’s – including the last four all on the road. Portland is sporting an Offensive Rating that is the third best in the league and is getting balanced scoring, with five players averaging in double figures (Aldridge – 22.5, Lillard – 19.9, Matthews – 15.9, Batum – 13, Williams - 10.1).
11-15-13: Not many expected Portland to be a real player out west this season, but through three weeks, here they are at 6-2. LaMarcus Aldridge has turned into a dominant scorer and has paced the Blazers on the glass, while Damian Lillard has done his part by controlling the offense at a high level. The schedule hasn’t been overly difficult, but the Blazers have people talking with four straight wins.
11-8-13: The Blazers have been a bit of a mixed bag through four weeks, but despite major questions about their long-term consistency at center, they’re still 2-2 and look to have enough talent to make a run at the playoffs in 2013. A lot will rest on star point guard Damian Lillard, but with power forward LaMarcus Aldridge playing the best offensive ball of his career early, the Blazers definitely have a chance to be in the mix.
11-1-13: The Trail Blazers had an interesting offseason, in which they signed Mo Williams and acquired Robin Lopez and Thomas Robinson via trade. Reigning Rookie of the Year Damian Lillard, who played the most minutes of any player last season in the NBA, will lead this team again in 2013-14. Lillard’s enjoyable style of play makes him a must watch every night he is on the court. Also in his second season in Portland, coach Terry Stotts hopes to stop his team’s two-season streak of missing the playoffs. Both Lopez and Lillard had strong showings in the preseason as they look to make an impact on the Western Conference this season.
10-21-13: The Portland Trail Blazers are 4-2 through their six preseason games. After losing the first two games to the Los Angeles Clippers and Phoenix Suns, Portland won four in a row against the Jazz twice, the Clippers and the Sacramento Kings. Damian Lillard was the Blazers’ leading scorer in five of those six games. He had a preseason high 28 points in the most recent win against Sacramento and is averaging 20.2 points per game through the preseason. Portland only has one preseason game remaining:
8-23-13: A season removed from being a fringe playoff contender, the Portland Trail Blazers may have just added the depth they needed to push them over the edge. A historically bad bench last season kept Portland’s starters playing big minutes and leads evaporating when they’d finally rest. Former All-Star Mo Williams was brought in to back up and mentor Rookie of the Year Damian Lillard and Portland traded for big men Robin Lopez and Thomas Robinson to provide the bulk they were missing last year with J.J. Hickson. Combo guard C.J. McCollum was drafted 10th overall and will provide scoring punch off the bench.
Portland will open their home season schedule on Saturday, November 2nd against the defending Western Conference Champion San Antonio Spurs. The Houston Rockets visit the PDX the next home game on November 5th as well as Thursday, December 12th. Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder will come to town on Wednesday, December 4th and again on Tuesday, February 11th. The defending champion Miami Heat will make their sole Portland appearance on Saturday, December 28th.
Key Home Games:
- November 2nd – San Antonio Spurs
- November 22nd – Chicago Bulls
- November 25th – New York Knicks
- December 26th – L.A. Clippers
- December 28th – Miami Heat
8-7-13: The Blazers will sign free agent
point guard Mo Williams will to a two-year, $5.6 million deal.
7-1-13: The Portland Trail Blazers selected C.J. McCollum out of the mid-major school Lehigh. McCollum is a talented combo guard with good size at 6-3 197 pounds. He is 21 years old and played all four years of college ball. C.J. averaged almost 24 points per game in his senior year, leading his team to an NCAA tournament berth. He will fit nicely backing up Damien Lillard in Portland and they should be able to make a push for the playoffs. Last year Portland only won 33 games and finished 11th in the Western conference. McCollum is a proven scorer and a great shooter; he shot the 3 at a 51% clip in his senior season which is remarkable. He also has the ability to slash to the basket and draw fouls shooting 6.1 free throws per game last year. The Blazers had an average ticket price of $78 for home games last year. If they can make a push in the west and make the playoffs, that number will surely rise.
Trail Blazers 2013 Draft Summary:
Round 1, Pick 10: PG C.J. McCollum, Lehigh.
Round 2, Pick 9: C Jeff Withey, Kansas. Round 2, Pick 10: PF Grant Jarrett, Arizona. Round 2, Pick 15: C Marko Todorovic, Spain.
6-12-13: Despite a poor 33-win season and no playoff berth, the Blazers have a very bright spot in rookie point guard Damien Lillard. Last month, Lillard was awarded the Rookie of The year award for his accomplishments. Averaging 19 points and over 6 assists per game, Lillard made an immediate impact that surprised many. Evidently the Blazers were not surprised at all, because they drafted him 6th overall in last year’s first round. As he begins to gel more with teammates such as LaMarcus Aldridge and Nicolas Batum look for the Blazers to once again start a long streak of playoff appearances for their loyal fans. Winning is never easy in the West, so head coach Terry Stotts and his players will have their work cut out for them.
2-20-13: The Portland Trailblazers are currently out of the playoff picture. They have gotten great play from their rookie point guard, Damien Lillard, but it hasn’t been enough. At 25-29 they are losers of 6 in a row and sit in the 9th spot out West. The Blazers however have protected their home court nicely winning 17 out of 26 games at the Rose Garden. The Blazers face the Lakers in LA and the Celtics at home as their next two games approach. A serious push will need to be made in the next 2 weeks if the Blazers want to enter the post season. With the all-star break in the rear view, the Western Conference will shut it’s doors quickly.
1-26-12: Coming off a disappointing 4th quarter collapse in Brooklyn, the Blazers are still trying to find their niche. With decent talent up and down the roster the Blazers should look to improve on their 6-7 record and make a playoff push. Games against the Pistons and Wizards should help their cuase and push them over the .500 mark. The Blazers opened the season with an impressive win against the Lakers but then proceeded to lose 5 of the next 6 games.