Conspiracy Theories!

Need a break from work? I did, and that's why I decided to compile this list of theories that, if true, proves there was a massive conspiracy--supported from within the Blazers organization and from without--to orchestrate Brandon Roy's retirement from the game and at the same time allow both him and the franchise to save face.

Don't get me wrong; I love Roy and all that he did for the Blazers and the city of Portland. I'm glad he's leaving on his own *wink-wink* terms. But the paranoid in me can't help but look at all the evidence and conclude that we, the loyal fans, have been duped. Is it that big a deal, you ask? Nah. Better it happened like this than with some messy divorce that would only sully Roy's legacy and heap more shame on the team.

So take a seat on the grassy knoll, put another layer of tin foil under your hat and read on to learn the truth (disclaimer: this is nothing but unfounded speculation) behind Brandon Roy's departure.

Theory #1: Brandon Roy has Known About His Impending Retirement Since the End of Last Season

That is why...

  • ...he kept such a low profile all summer, sitting out both his own charity game and LMA's Rip City Classic (he didn't want to create any expectations or give the lawyers evidence that he could still play);
  • ...he was never filmed in action during any of the supposed pick-up games in Seattle, including the scrimmage against the Huskies that was closed to the public "because someone leaked the story to the media";
  • ...he said after Game 4 of the Dallas series that he wasn't sure he would ever play again (he knew his career was ending and thought his 8 minutes of ineffectiveness in Game 2 meant he wouldn't even be on the court for Games 3 and 4; also explains why he thought he would "be treated better" on his way out the door);
  • ...he was so quiet on the lockout (no reason to fight for a system that--amnesty clause aside--won't affect you).

Theory #2: Paul Allen Knew

That is why...

  • ...he fought so hard for a lower salary cap (it would necessitate the inclusion of an amnesty clause, giving him leverage over Roy, who would prefer retirement to being waived and then having to suffer the indignity of no team wanting to pay for his services after putting him through a physical);
  • ...John Canzano--aka Deep Throat--claimed that league sources (who presumably sat in on the CBA negotiations and were aware of Allen's interest in the amnesty clause) were saying the owner had already made up his mind to shed Roy's contract (one way or another);
  • ...he fired Rich Cho, who wanted to go public with Allen's Roy anxieties in a way that would have hurt Brandon and harmed the franchise.

Theory #3: LaMarcus Aldridge Knew Too (Eventually)

That is why...

  • ...he seemed so unsurprised by Roy's no-show at his charity game, citing his teammate's "family issues"--the most cliched excuse in the history of public relations;
  • ...he has been courting Jamal Crawford non-stop for weeks, and likely on Roy's recommendation and with his blessing.

Theory #4: Heck, Even Jamal Crawford Knew

That is why...

  • ...he said such nice things about Roy's game over the summer (he was contributing to the impression that his friend could still play, thus making the Blazers' supposed excitement to be having Roy back seem more plausible and setting the stage for his medical retirement as opposed to a waiver);
  • ...he has allowed himself to be courted by Aldridge/Portland (again, likely with Roy's blessing) and auditioned for the fans at the Rip City Classic.

Theory #5: The Blazers Were Pushing Roy Hard Towards Retirement (and Threatening Him with Amnesty)

That is why...

  • ...Buchanan called Roy's agent at 6 AM--the clock was ticking on both free agency and the amnesty and the team had to get the ball rolling on Roy's retirement ASAP;
  • ...Buchanan, Miller, and McMillan met with Roy; not to discuss his role on the team, but to stage-manage his exit;
  • sounded so optimistic about Roy in those press conferences (it gave them a chance to debunk the amnesty "rumor" and talk up Roy's good attitude before he had taken the all-important physical);
  • ...the team seems so unconcerned with the medical retirement versus amnesty decision now that everyone *knows* they were really hoping Roy would be back.

Conflicting Evidence

  • Wasn't Roy supposed to have been inconsolable the day of the announcement? Hardly sounds like a man who has known for months what his fate would be (unless the real reason he didn't want to hold a press conference was precisely that he didn't look torn up about the decision).
  • Didn't Jason Quick write that Roy's house was full of unpacked boxes? You wouldn't move all your stuff to Portland if you weren't planning to play (unless you're a multimillionaire who doesn't like to travel light and you know you're going to be in town for a few weeks sorting out all this medical retirement business).
  • Others? (Help me out!)

There you have it: my case for a conspiracy. As I said at the outset, it could all be a load of bunk, but then half the fun of a conspiracy theory is sorting the lies from the damn lies (i.e., some of it could be true and some of it not).

What do you all think?

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