The Portland Trail Blazers went 2-1 this week with wins over the Brooklyn Nets and Indiana Pacers before closing out the week with a loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. The 11th and 12th wins of the year for Portland coming in the same week as the 30th loss puts the Blazers firmly near the bottom of the standings.
Despite the fact that this has been a rebuilding year, there have still been plenty of individual performances that have been impressive this year, especially this week with the two wins. With that being said, this week’s Blazer of the Week is Drop Reath.
Reath has been one of the best stories for Portland this year. The 27-year-old rookie has consistently played himself into a bigger and bigger role in the lineup as the year has gone on. This week, as one of the first players off the bench, Reath averaged 12.0 points and 5.0 rebounds per game. He also added 1.0 blocks and 1.3 made 3-pointers per game during he week.
The big man has filled in during injuries to some of the Blazers’ typical center rotation, earning a string of starts during Deandre Ayton’s absence. Since Ayton’s return during this week, Reath has moved back to the bench, where he was in the final two games of the week. Despite a slightly decreased role, Reath has still excelled.
His ability to stretch the floor from the center spot has caused matchup problems for opposing defenses. He forces his man to guard him on the perimeter, opening the lane for driving guards to take advantage of. I his two highest scoring performances of the week, scoring 17 against the Nets and 16 against the Lakers, he hit two 3-pointers in each.
His shooting percentages were incredibly efficient this week, as he made 73.7 percent of his field goal attempts during the week, missing only one shot inside the arc. His emergence as an offensive threat has given the Blazers offense another dimension to force opposing defenses to adapt to.
The honorable mention for this week is Malcolm Brogdon.
Brogdon averaged 23.0 points, 7.0 assists and 6.3 rebounds per game this week while starting in all three games due to a lineup change. He has served as a veteran presence for this young Portland team throughout the year. Although he has had games where he struggles from the field or takes too many shots, this week he had some of his best performances of the season.
He was able to score efficiently, shooting 48.9 percent from the field during the three games this week. His ability to shoot well while also facilitating the offense for the Blazers helped Portland look more dynamic on that side of the ball.
Which Blazer impressed you the most this week? Let us know in the comments!