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Brandon: Blazers Get "B" With Lower Expectations

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Steve Brandon of the Portland Tribune grades the Portland Trail Blazers a "B" for their 2012 NBA Draft and writes that the climate seems a little different these days compared to recent years. ------------------------------ I'm not ready to anoint new general manager Neil Olshey as a genius, or even give the Blazers an "A" grade for making two picks that probably most NBA clubs, and even sportswriters, would have made. The two picks seem pretty much like no-brainers, given what unfolded before Portland's turns came at Nos. 6 and 11. ... it seems to me that the Blazers deserve a "B" grade, maybe a "B-plus" — and of course, just like in high school, grades can fluctuate from September to June. ... It's interesting how the bar has been lowered — or at least changed — in Rip City. Years of first-round exits, not to mention one bad and at times tumultuous season, which included the firing of a longtime head coach, can do that. The Blazers have stumbled enough that now they need to take one step and then another before they can think about trying to run and make a giant leap. ------------------------------ -- Ben Golliver | benjamin.golliver@gmail.com | Twitter
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