(Note: I started this post as a FanShot, but it just got too long for that. Apologies if you think it should've stayed that way. Maybe it should've.)
UPDATE: It already WAS a FanShot, two days ago, from MilledAnimal. I am just trailing in his wake.
SI compiles comments on the Blazers from scouts around the NBA for other teams, and put it up to-day. It's got a paragraph each on:
- Oden ("He's going to be a very good player, no doubt. But a superstar? I'm just not ready to go that far yet.")
- LaMardridge ("[Y]ou can tell by how far he's come already that he's going to keep getting better . . . He was the guy on our scouting reports who you had to stop up front last year.")
- Nate ("[Oden]'s playing for a coach in Nate McMillan who will handle his growth and adjustments very well. McMillan is one of the ex-players who works hard at coaching his team and getting them prepped for each game. From what I understand, he has a lot to say about the players they get and the trades they make.")
- Roy ("The guy I love on this team is Brandon Roy. He's a class act who truly knows how to play, and he's a good example to his teammates. But what I love most about him -- he's one of the best in the league at this -- is that you cannot take him out of the style of game he wants to play.")
- Blake ("He's a guy who doesn't need to get a ton of shots, but he will execute the pick-and-roll. That's what they need on this team.")
- Rudy ("If he turns out to have the talent of a legitimate starter on a playoff team, if he winds up being that good, then this team is going to be dangerous.")
Combo paragraphs on:
- Bayless (" . . . too small to be a shooting guard. But they can play him at times alongside Roy, who has the size to guard the shooting guards.") and Sergio (" . . . has a chance to be a player. If they get rid of him, he's a guy I would keep an eye on.")
- MarWeb and Trout (" . . . both underappreciated wings who can guard and who are excellent in transition.")
A summary on the team as a whole, which starts with a bit I found pretty good, and I'm putting in italics here:
As a whole, this group reminds me of the old Mavericks when they were getting started with Steve Nash, Michael Finley and Dirk Nowitzki.
This is a legitimate playoff team that is ready to win now, and I don't know if I'd like to run into them in the playoffs.
They're so scary that if they put their talent together for a few games in a row,
especially on their home court, that's something the rest of us don't want to face.
I guess the glaring omission is Przy, if only because they got to everybody else above Diogu-ShavRand level.
No mention of "Rock" Batum, either, but I have a feeling these reports were compiled before his emergence post-MarWeb-injury as more than a project.