Who knows if the players ever come on to the blogs to read their good and bad reviews from fans. All I know is that LaMarcus Aldridge, if you find your way to reading this post, allow me to say I'm sorry.
I have never wronged you. I have always appreciated your talent, and that you've been an upstanding NBA player that's dealt with a serious heart condition. That you are fiercely loyal. That you had to deal with your mom battling cancer and used that as motivation to get your first All-Star berth. That you were intended to be the 3rd cog in the Roy/Oden era, but went about your business through that tumultuous time. These are all wonderful things.
But deep down I have always doubted you. Regardless of your season to season improvement, I saw a ceiling, and in my eyes, it wasn't going to lead the Blazers to really anywhere promising. While you were blessed with remarkable talent by being one of the last true big man with a back to the basket game to compliment a soft outside touch, I penciled you in as an underachiever. Tim Duncan talent, with Derrick Coleman ambition.
This summer, I was in full support of trading you for picks and young talent because I didn't think your game was going to progress. That you had plateaued. And if this team was going to reboot a new era with a fresh start, that they should tank for a high draft pick, and get the most for you now.
Well, I was wrong. Way wrong. And I am more than happy to eat the stankiest of crow. You sir, have not only upped your stellar game, but you have noticeably become the leader this team has so desperately lacked. The MVP chants that rang down last night were well deserved. You're becoming what I had always hoped you would, but didn't have the faith in believing.
This team has such a special feel, and I hope you're enjoying the ride as much as the fans are. We know your contract situation is still a "situation", but hopefully as this wonderful start to the season continues, and you progress as a leader and elite player, you begin to finally foster the love affair with the Blazer faithful. You are at a point where you could become the greatest Trail Blazer of them all, and leave a tremendous legacy. I, for one, would love to see it!