Just like the title reads, folks:
Let me first say hello to all my Blazer's Edge comrades all around the world. [The] first thing I would like to talk about is this team's identity (or style of play). My question to all of you is: do you really know the style of play of this team on a consistent basis? In my humble opinion, I would like Nate to make [the methodology of] this very young group into a defensive-type Detroit/Spurs style of play.
One of the problems this team has is [that] you really don't know what Blazers team is going to show up on a nightly basis. If Nate decided this offseason to go a pure defensive style and play to an 88-83 [win], this team would be scary. To back up my theory is the fact that our team is very long and young. If you can sell Roy/Aldridge/Oden on playing a strictly defensive style, I promise you these kids will all buy into it.
[Regarding] Nate, I know a lot of you guys are upset with his style of play and coaching skills, but a lot of [you] (as usual) dropped the ball on one most-important fact: there is no pressure on Nate to win a title for at least three years. All of this foolish talk of a dynasty in PDX is very unrealistic - sorry to burst a lot of your [...] bubbles. In the NBA, it takes time to become a serious title contender on a yearly basis. Bird/Magic/Duncan are the exceptions to the rule. Even MJ took seven years to win his first of six (and should've been eight-straight) title rings.
Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge are going to be a lethal combo, but the Blazers are missing that third wheel; a guy like a Kevin Durant would be perfect for this group. When the draft was going to happen two years ago, I said Durant would fit [in perfectly] with those two guys, but I understood why Oden was the choice. As time goes on, Oden should come into his own as a defensive dominant force. As for his offense, I said if  Oden equaled 14-16 points, 10.5-12.5 rebounds and 3.5 blocks [per] game, [Nate] would breakdance down Pioneer Square. This is a message to all the fans who really believed Oden was going to put up Shaq numbers (28 points, 11.5 rebounds, 2 blocks [per] night): stop dreaming. Oden is going to be a lot closer to [the] numbers I predicted than those unrealistic Shaq numbers many of you believed he would put up.
Do I believe Oden is a bust? No. [As a] matter of fact, when I was chatting with [Mike] Rice two weeks ago I said, "Coach [ed: ??], imagine him two years from this day (1/15/11) - how he'll be and [where] this franchise will be at." He looked at me and said "Scary. Very scary." I couldn't agree with him more. Fans (especially [those] who jumped aboard during the Oden regime), this message is for you: be patient; it's going to take at least 3-4 years to get the pieces in place for a very long title run.
With Allen, Miller, Koldhe and (especially) Pritchard making the moves [with] a financial bankroll in place, this team has a legitimate title window between 2011-2017 to win at least two titles, maybe three. The crowds at the Rose Garden (a.k.a. "God's Palace") [...] sometimes gives me goosebumps. I love PDX. It's the best little city America keeps sleeping on. Like I told Williams and Rice, keep it that way, Portlanders. The last thing you really need out there is riffraff invading that beautiful city on the Pacific coast. Keep up the great work, Blazers fans, because we haven't [yet] even scratched the damn surface on how great this franchise is going to be.
So, to wrap up my first article, in my humble opinion:
- Nate should go to a strictly defensive-type team because of the youth and length of the kids on the roster.
- Roy/Aldridge need one more guy to make this team complete.
- Oden is not going to be a Shaq-type of player - more [of] a [Bill] Russell type of player.
- This franchise is in great shape fiancially [as well as in the] player management department.
- The fans have been sensational in PDX, [not to mention] the state of Oregon, but most importantly at the Rose Garden. Keep up the great work, Blazermaniacs.
- [Lastly], how can I forget the most loyal Blazer fans on the planet, the readers and contributors on Blazer's Edge. Without you, I wouldn't know any of you great people. A special "thank you" to Dave for asking me to write this article. And to you, Ben, for giving me a fair shot to talk to you about the team while [I] was on my one-year ban.
Thank-you blazersedge. Keep up the great blogging and, most importantly, go Blazers.