There are only a few teams in the NBA that seem to have a chance of being good year in and year out. In most cases, a team will get hot for a few years, then age and free agency will take its toll, and that once great team will begin to shuffle to the back of the line. As quickly as they rose to basketball prominence, they turn into a team that struggles to stay above 500 and struggles even more to keep fans in the seats.
Such is the case with the Portland Trailblazers. In the past, this team was an NBA powerhouse. In fact, recently, this team was poised to be a real contender in the NBA’s very competitive Western Conference. However, thanks to injuries, retirements and bad team chemistry, the word most NBA fans of their teams dread to hear came calling to the Portland Trailblazers; that word is rebuilding.
Just a few short years ago, center Greg Odom and guard Brandon Roy as well as Raymond Felton and Jamal Crawford were the building blocks to a franchise that was looking to contend for the NBA title. However, because of continual injuries to Odom and the retirement of Roy, Portland was left with some big shoes to fill.
In addition to the injuries and retirement issues, the locker room moral had become toxic. With little else to lose, the Portlnd Trailblazers tore it all down and begin rebuilding the team. That was last year, and while the rebuilding process is still ongoing, the Trailblazers look to be an exciting team to watch, even while still being a team in transition.
There are two main reasons that this season could be an interesting one for the Portland Trailblazers. The first is a constant, and that is Portland’s home court advantage. It’s the furthest northwestern team and it’s a long haul to go up to Portland and play even for teams in their division.
The second reason why this team is one to keep your eye on is how they are developing their roster. Thanks to the Gerald Wallace trade with the Brooklyn Nets, they were able to draft the speedy guard Damian Lillard. Being the second top scorer in the NCAA makes him a key player in the rebuilding process and looks to make the contest for NBA Rookie of the Year quite interesting.
In addition, they also chose to go with 7 foot 1 inch center Meyers Lenard. Still a bit raw and lacking a good post game, this young talent could pay off with big dividends in the coming years as a solid and powerful force in the middle of the court.
Fookies aren’t all the Portland is betting the farm on, however. With the retention of Nicholas Batum, and the return of the all star forward LaMarkus Aldridge, this team has an unusual and interesting mix of young talent and talented and skilled veterans.
While the rebuilding isn’t over, that lean first year is over and it looks like this team is now officially on the move. If you are interested in being a witness to a growing force in the NBA, grabs some Portland Trail Blazers tickets either for a preseason game or the upcoming regular season.