So I just want to start off by saying once again that I am not a stats guy. So if you are looking for a statistical breakdown of the upcoming playoffs this is not the post for you. I would like to express my appreciation for this team, my appreciation for where we have come from to where we are now, and express my love for the one and only sports franchise that has ever mattered to me. I love this team. I love that I can watch a game and believe that this team wants to win, and win for the sake of winning. Not for the "street cred", not for the sake of proving it to anyone but themselves. I love that I can watch a game, even when the Blazers are behind and think to myself, "We got this."
I am a diehard Blazer fan. I watched every game I could during the worst of times that I have ever seen since I have been a fan. I have met "Jail Blazers" out in the real world and been straight dissed by them in person, and continued to watch my beloved Blazers on tv and gone to the games. I have allowed excuses for losing, and held faith in the idea that things would get better. And I'm glad that I did. Because things have gotten better. A lot better.
My expectations going into this season were modest. I remember the day that the schedule came out I thought to myself, "You have got to be kidding, this cannot be happening." I thought this must be some kind of marketing ploy by the NBA, to showcase the next big underdog. The schedule this year has been nothing short of brutal. All year I have tried to keep myself in check saying, "This team is young. This is a learning year. All of this will help build them into a winning team." But I must say I had no idea that things would be looking this good heading into the post-season. First I want to say I think this team can beat anybody. I think they can beat the rockets. I think they could beat LA. But I am taking a wait and see approach. If they do, then they will reinforce everything that I have seen all year. They have shown that they will not back down. They do not acquiesce to the status quo. They win because they are winners. They know they can win and they aren't arrogant about it. They are humble in victory, and they do not get ahead of themselves. They are flexible, they are hungry, and they are highly skilled. This is perhaps my favorite Blazers lineup of all time. I would be more than happy to support this team for the next 12 years.
With that said, I wanted to add that if they do not make it out of the first round,(Which I think they will), I know that this is going to be a different team next year. The roster may be exactly the same, but as people, all of these players will have gained the maturity,poise and focus, that they will need to be perrenial playoff contenders. This team has never been to the playoffs. I don't know if that matters. And for what it's worth, I believe this team has what it takes to be CHAMPIONS. The Blazers have officially put the rest of the league on notice.
TO THE NBA: GET YOUR HEADS ON STRAIGHT! IF YOU ARE NOT PREPARED TO BRING YOUR A-GAME, THEN DO NOT EXPECT VICTORY AGAINST THIS TEAM! THEY WILL GIVE YOU NOTHING! IF YOU WANT TO WIN THEN BE PREPARED FOR THE FIGHT OF YOUR LIVES! YOU MAY THINK THAT YOU ARE WINNING, BUT WHEN YOU LOOK AT THE SCOREBOARD AT THE END OF THE GAME YOU WILL SAY ONLY ONE THING; "WHAT THE H HAPPENED?" THIS TEAM IS YOUNGER THAN YOU. THIS TEAM IS BETTER THAN YOU. THIS TEAM CAN BEAT YOU ANYWHERE. THIS TEAM HAS A BETTER ATTITUDE. THIS TEAM WILL MAKE YOU WISH THAT YOU WERE YOUNG ENOUGH TO START YOUR NBA CAREER LIKE THIS! AND THIS TEAM WILL BE THE CHAMPIONS! Maybe not this year, maybe not next but, I Believe. I BELIEVE! This team has made me remember what it is to be a Blazer Believer! I LOVE THIS TEAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!