During a group question and answer session this afternoon, Portland Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy made some interesting comments about how he approaches the preseason, how difficult it is to stay motivated during the preseason, the team's offensive struggles and the direction he sees the offense heading.
Here's a partial transcript.
How are you balancing this just being the preseason with getting some work in and looking sharper?
I'm pretty cool. I'm not panicking at all... [Marcus] Camby is 10 years in, [Andre Miller] is 11 years in, I'm the type of guy, I never really cared for preseason, even my rookie year. I think at times it's tough for us to really motivate ourselves to go out there. I think we've got to try to push it these last couple games and try to find it, because we haven't scored the ball very well.
Why have there been struggles?
Some of it is not making shots. We really haven't put in the offense we're used to working with. I know the first three games we didn't even have an offensive play. I know I don't like to play loose. I kind of need some plays, some organization there. That's some of the reason we're not panicking yet, because we're not really running plays yet. Once we do that, maybe we'll have to evaluate how we're really playing.
How much of the offense has been installed?
We put a lot in today. We put in plays all season. We kind of play more towards scouts. We haven't really played towards scouting at all. I would say a small percent of our plays are in. But right now, we're just trying to work on movement offenses, just different things we weren't very good at last year.
Are you comfortable with the offensive sets up to this point?
With the offense we've been running, nah, because that's not really my style. We'll get more towards my style of play when we get towards the regular season.
What do you mean by your style?
More pick and rolls. More isolation plays. Right now we're doing a lot of powering, a lot of coming off screens. A lot of crossing. I think that's going to be more of the second string's offense. And the starters will play something different.
Do you think the offense will return to like it was last year?
Last year I thought it was different from 2 years before, just with adding 'Dre. I think we're going to continue some of that from last year but try to get back maybe from a couple of years ago, before 'Dre came, where I get the ball a little bit more. I want the basketball a lot more.
Blazers head coach Nate McMillan told me he has indeed expanded the team's offensive playbook with an eye towards "personalizing" sets for each of his offensive weapons.
What we've done is kind of personalize the offense, where we can run sets for certain guys. We've given them some sets now where they can run plays for Brandon, run plays for LaMarcus, run plays for Rudy. We got calls in now that we can do that. The first three games I really wanted them to focus on the defensive end of the floor and we didn't give them a lot offensively. So we were basically running our early offense.
-- Ben Golliver | firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter