II live in Seattle and lost the Sonics as you all know. There's nothing worse than being a Blazer Fan who lives in Seattle. The pain of choosing Oden over Durant was mitigated just a little bit by being able to watch Durant that formative first year here in Seattle. But you know the rest of that story. But my focus here is not on what has been lost, by Seattle or by the Blazers -- the point is to focus on all that we have for which to be grateful.
Despite all that has been lost, and despite all the well-publicized (even legendary) challenges the Blazer team (and fanbase) has absorbed over the past few years, any current challenges we may have as Blazer fans are nice problems to have.
I have vivid memories of some painful moments over the past decade-plus:
- The meltdown in the Western Conference Finals.
- Shawn Kemp in a Blazer jersey.
- Damon and his aluminum foil in the airport.
- The Yellow Hummer.
- Bonzi spitting on Danny Ferry, literally, and the fans figuratively.
- Nick Van Exel killing us as a Maverick, and then quitting on us as a Blazer.
- Qyntel Woods using a rookie trading card as a driver's license in the Tualatin curves.
- "Both Teams Played Hard"
- The failed Sebastian Telfair investment
- Ha Seung Jin
- Drafting Martell Webster instead of Chris Paul
- Feeling like our best hope was acquiring Trenton Hassell -- and failing to do so
- Z-Bo's "Hoops Family"
- The perennial pain of watching Oden limp on the sidelines in a business suit
- Drafting Babbitt instead of Faried
- The looming lockout that threatened this entire season (and beyond)
- The loss of Brandon Roy, perhaps the worst of all of these
I look at our current team and am thrilled about the season that is upon us. This entire season was almost lost to the lockout madness, and instead of no Blazers at all, we end up with a DEEP team led by Aldridge, Wallace, Camby, Felton, and Mathews, with guys like Crawford, Batum, Thomas, and Craig Smith coming off the bench -- and a couple of talented rookes in the mix? Plus Nate McMillan demonstrating that he's willing (and able!) to let them run?
Man, what a nice problem to have, huh? Cheers to the 2012 Blazer season. Go Rip City, from the Emerald City.