Starting today and continuing until they stop making Grey’s Anatomy seasons, Scott Horlbeck will be writing a weekly column for Blazers Edge. The column will appear each Wednesday and will cover important things like social media, food at Blazers games and if Robin Lopez will ever get a response from his bae Emmy Rossum. Enjoy!
The NBA is here!
Let me try that again.
The NBA Preseason is here!
While it may not be as exciting as a new season of Game of Thrones (is anything?), the NBA Preseason is a sign that basketball is almost here and baseball is almost over. Unpopular opinion alert: watching a bunch of guys strike out for four hours isn’t exactly my cup of tea.
But you know what is my cup of tea? Tazo Chai Full Leaf. You’re right, I’m better than that…
Basketball is also my cup of tea and that fact that preseason basketball is here has me doing the Ron Swanson.
It also has me thinking: What should Blazers fans be most excited about for this preseason?
1. Mike and Mike
I have so many videos on my phone of Mike and Mike saying outrageous things that I should start a website. What people don’t realize is that Barrett is actually the more overt homer of the two. Yes Rice sounds crazy, but Barrett’s worse. He’s just smarter about the way he describes things. Watching a game on local broadcast with these two is like watching an episode of ‘Long Island Medium’ with my girlfriend.
Me: "This is so fake."
Her: "No it’s not! How could she know her son died???"
Me: "Because she asked a room of 30 if anyone had ever lost a son?"
Her: "I don’t care. I love this show and you’re a jerk"
Question: will this be the year Mike Rice finally gets kicked out of a preseason game? For those who don’t know, Rice was actually kicked out of a regular season game in 1994 by the immortal Steve Javie. Can he do the impossible and make it happen in a meaningless preseason game? We’ll have to wait and see. (fingers crossed)
2. Seeing Damian Lillard Play Basketball Again
Damian is awesome. Not many guys in the league carry themselves with that level of confidence (I’m not using swagger because old people have officially ruined that word) and poise, and as we now know, watching him at the end of a close game is must-see television.
3. Free Throw Guy
Oh stop – you know you love him.
4. Finding Out Who Got Better
It’s usually pretty obvious - especially with the younger guys - to tell who took the offseason seriously. It’s basically the opposite of what Raymond Felton does ever year. A few potential "Oh he definitely got better this offseason" guys: Thomas Robinson, C.J. McCollum, Will Barton, Allen Crabbe. I’m leaving out Meyers Leonard because I think the train is just too far off the tracks. Secretly intriguing guy that could make some noise during preseason and potentially carve out a role for himself on this team: James Sutherland. Undrafted out of Syracuse, but has the type of "stretch four" game that teams really covet.
5. WILL THE THRILL
THEY CALL HIM WILL THE THRILL. THEY CALL HIM WILL THE THRILL.
6. Three-point Range For LaMarcus?
It’s not super pressing, but I’ve been curious these past few years to see if LaMarcus would ever develop a three-point shot. It’s definitely not out of the question when you consider similar "stretch four" guys in this league who can shoot the three (Chris Bosh, Dirk Nowitzki, Kevin Love, Channing Frye, Ryan Anderson). And with the level of reliance that LaMarcus places on his mid-range game, mixed with the fact that he’s basically shooting college threes most of the time, the NBA line is only three more feet.
Note: Check out Evans Clinchy's piece for further discussion of Aldridge taking triples.
7. Blazers Dunk Squad
You know you miss watching these guy go like 3/5 on their dunks.
8. Phyllis in Mulga, AL
I know this has nothing to do with the Blazers but has anyone ever cared about anything as much as Phyllis cares about ‘Bama?
9. Moda Center Renovations
The Moda Center is getting a $16 million facelift that includes suite remodeling’s, a new 300-level bar with views of downtown and an underground aquarium that makes Seaworld look like a doctor’s office fish tank. (one of these might be a lie)
10. Basketball Is Back