Ken Berger of CBSSports.com writes that rookie guard Damian Lillard has made him do a complete 180 on the Portland Trail Blazers since his preseason assessment.
The season is barely a week old, and already it's time for my first mea culpa. In my season predictions column, I listed the Trail Blazers as my "Demise Team" in the West, saying, "There's no doubt the Blazers will be positively awful this season." Wrong! Having watched rookie Damian Lillardlead the plucky Blazers (2-2) to victories over the Lakers and Rockets and give the Thunder all they could handle in Oklahoma City, awful is not a word I'll use regarding the Blazers any longer. There will be rough nights for Lillard and the Blazers, as was the case Monday night in a 114-91 loss at Dallas. But I like this Blazers team a lot more than I thought I would, and thought that was worth pointing out.
Here's what he wrote before the season started.
Demise team (West): Trail Blazers. On one hand, you pity the Blazers for all the miserable injury luck they've had. On the other, with their arrogant ownership and penchant for going through GMs like I'll be going through beef jerky in the hurricane this week, there's a what-goes-around-comes-around feel to the Blazers' demise. Whichever side of that argument you're on, there's no doubt the Blazers will be positively awful this season. In a pitiful sort of way.
Earlier this week, John Hollinger of ESPN.com made a similar about-face.