The Portland Trail Blazers’ frontcourt rotation has changed significantly since February 21st, when Enes Kanter first took the floor in a Blazers uniform. Meyers Leonard and Zach Collins have been relegated to warm-ups. Kanter has eaten their minutes and garnered praise while doing so; Portland is undefeated since his arrival.
In his weekly “10 Things I Like (and Don’t Like) About the NBA” column, ESPN writer Zach Lowe suggests that Collins, at least, may make a reappearance, and that the shift in strategy for Head Coach Terry Stotts goes far beyond the frontcourt. After praising Kanter’s scoring ability, Lowe notes:
Terry Stotts’ faith in five-man bench mobs has wavered; he now often keeps one of Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum on the floor for entire games, or limits all-bench time to only two or three minutes.
With one star on the court, Collins will be a better fit than Kanter in some matchups. He’s a better shooter, and a much more reliable and versatile defender.
Lowe also talks about the Los Angeles Lakers, San Antonio Spurs, superlative play from Trae Young and Harry Giles, and much more in the always-interesting column.
Our own Ryne Buchanan also wrote this week about how Collins could see an on-court resurrection before summer.