It's painful and it's really depressing but if pritchard has any sense then he must realize that it's time to admit that oden was a mistake and move on from this rather than exacerbate the situation. his recent long term planning has been based around building the team around a core of roy / oden & aldridge. that should change. maybe oden can come back and play well but the assumption should now be that he is going to continually get hurt and be limited in the minutes he can provide to this franchise.
what does this mean?
First I think it means that the Blazers must resist any temptation to extend this guy in the offseason. if oden can't come back from this injury or has another injury-plagued campaign in 2010/2011, the Blazers can walk away with no more financial obligations. if he does break out, they still have the option to match any offer he gets.
I think what also means that the Blazers need to consider packaging the remaining assets they have and work to find a 3rd piece to group with aldridge and roy. i think the timing is wrong to get that third impact guy in the lottery. his development would take time one, and two the blazers are not likely to be in a position to get a high pick. they may well miss the playoffs this year but they aren't going to do any worse than the 10 to 14 spot in the draft.
as for who this should be or what position they should play I honestly don't know. all i know is that I don't believe a team built around roy / aldridge + role players is ever going to contend for a title, these two are going to need another star-level guy to play with.
rudy and batum are probably the most attractive assets that we have. i like them both very much but i doubt that either one can develop to the star level we'll need to have a big three. both would be great role players but i believe role players are easier to find than core guys so if we have a chance to trade them and net that 3rd guy, it should be done.
i think anymore planning that is predicated around, "when greg comes back", wastes what opportunity we might have with roy. also this injury makes all the more painfully clear that it's roy that is this franchise for the forseeable future. as for aldridge, i really like him but i'm not sure he's got the talent to be 2nd bannana on a contending team. i think he's a solid third guy. i would honestly say that he should be on the table trade wise as well except that his current contracts renders him untradeable. that's not the end of the world. he's good, not 65 million over 5 years good, but good nonetheless.
the focus should be finding that 3rd guy to run with roy and LA, Greg's a great kid but the time for planning your organizations future around him should end today. whatever he can give us from here should be seen as a really nice bonus rather than something we're relying on.