The Trail Blazers acquisition of Hassan Whiteside is paying immediate dividends. The former Heat big man is averaging 19 points and 14 rebounds through two games. Despite Whiteside’s strong start, it didn’t prevent The Ringer’s frontman Bill Simmons from voicing concerns.
On Thursday’s episode of The Bill Simmons Podcast, Simmons issued a warning for the Blazers if Whiteside gets off to a hot start.
Whiteside had a big game last night [Wednesday], and I actually think that is a bad thing for Portland. I think that the worst thing that can happen for them is him getting good stats, because that will make them think, ‘oh, maybe Whiteside.’ It is not happening to that guy.
Simmons went on to explain that the Blazers’ power structure on the court could get thrown out of order if Whiteside gets the impression that he is the focal point of the offense, an issue that Heat coach Eric Spoelstra was forced to grapple with on a handful of occasions.
Whiteside, who endured a rocky tenure in Miami after signing a $98 million deal in the summer of 2016, still has his fair share of critics. If he continues to provide tertiary production alongside the Blazers elite backcourt, those critiques should subside.