Is Norman Powell a small forward or a shooting guard? To the Portland Trail Blazers and in an era of positionless basketball, does it really matter? For the sake of examining Powell as a player, Frank Urbina of HoopsHype slots him as a small forward in his latest position rankings, where Powell comes in at no. 15, between Andrew Wiggins of the Golden State Warriors and Mikal Bridges of the Phoenix Suns. As Urbina notes, Powell’s second year with the Blazers should go more smoothly.
Norman Powell’s numbers took a slight dip after his midseason trade from Toronto to the Portland Trail Blazers, but that was understandable considering he had to adjust to a brand-new role with a team that featured various high-usage scoring options.
In 2021-22, we should see more of the Powell who established himself as one of the better small forwards in basketball as a member of the Raptors, one with a ton of vertical bounce, speed in transition and spot-up shooting prowess.
Over his final two-and-a-half seasons with Toronto, Powell became an extremely reliable three-point shooter, hitting 41.4 percent of his threes in that span, making the 36.1 three-point percentage he posted in his half-season with the Blazers look like an outlier more than anything else.
Powell may lack in size for the position (though he makes up for that some with impressive length), which is a bit of a problem for a Portland team that has a small backcourt, but based purely on his strengths, his fit with the Blazers is a strong one, so we project 2021-22 to be another strong season for the former Raptor.
We look forward to seeing what Powell brings to the court this upcoming season.