Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Read and React: SI.com's NW Division Report Card

A couple solid previews about the Trail Blazers were lost in the shuffle last week due to the unfortunate passing of Kevin Duckworth. Now that we have some closure I think it's time we get back to talking about basketball.

Steve Aschburner of SI.com overviewed the offseasons of teams in the Northwest Division. Utah is still good, Denver isn't, the Timberwolves are getting better and OK City is an unknown.

And then there's the Trail Blazers. According to Aschburner, Brandon Roy continues to improve (true) and we've got tons of new talent joining an already decent club (double true). And that's not even factoring in Greg Oden. Good news abounds.

Aschburner really has to hunt to come up a "What went wrong" scenario, though his declaration that "Expectations are way out of wack" is on the money.
Given the obvious talent and the team's history -- it won an NBA championship during its first taste of the playoffs back in 1977 -- it's understandable that fans see big things in store for the Blazers. But this team is not ready yet. It remains the youngest in the NBA and Portland's players are all still growing, on the floor and off, and learning what it takes to win. Better that the Blazers take a modest step this season and keep advancing beyond that, than to soar too high and fall back.
True enough, though it's a bit difficult at this point to gauge expectations.

Me? My expectation is that we make the playoffs this season. I think that's a realistic goal given the additions to the roster and the possibility that Denver, Golden State, Sacramento, Dallas and Phoenix will have worse records this season.

So are your thoughts on Ashburner's report? Too optimistic? Not optimistic enough? Let's hear it.


Scott said...

I think that there has just been so much buzz about the Blazers and because of that some people might have lofty expectations. I think that he does somewhat imply that we might have some difficulties with keeping all this great talent when we have to extend some of the contracts for them. He makes a good point with that.

Stace said...

We got an A. I think that's pretty good. It's a problem that fans expectations are too high? Wow, what a problem. I don't think we are going to win a championship this year, but soon and many. I just looking forward to one of the most exciting seasons in years.