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The Trail Blazers’ Bigs are Hitting Jump Shots

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The Blazer’s Edge Podcast discusses Portland’s frontcourt shooting, the promise of rookies Zach Collins and Caleb Swanigan and more!

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NBA: Preseason-Portland Trail Blazers at Sacramento Kings Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

We squeezed as much information as we possibly could out of the first three preseason games and came up pretty excited about some new offensive wrinkles for this week’s edition of the Blazer’s Edge Podcast.

The bigs are taking—and making—midrange shots. The Trail Blazers are operating at a faster pace than last year, using nearly 11 more possessions per game. They are relying on fewer pick-and-rolls and more on transition and spot-up shooting (per Synergy stats). With the ball in his hands, Evan Turner is finding his rhythm and running the point from on the block.

And of course, we can't get enough Swanigan, Swanigan and more Caleb Swanigan! All this and more on this week’s edition of the Blazer’s Edge podcast.

Highlights

2:05 As excited as Dan will be all season.

3:45 Dan loves Swanigan who provides more options than anyone else on the floor not named Damian Lillard, C.J. McCollum or Jusuf Nurkic

6:20 How is Swanigan like Zach Randolph or Draymond Green?

9:55 Tara thinks Zach Collins shows promise and she promises to carry the torch for him this season

13:55 Dame and CJ were ready for the season to start yesterday

15:05 Nurkic has a jump shot

16:15 Attitude is everything

20:05 Dan predicts Caleb Swanigan is going to lead the Trail Blazers in technical fouls

24:00 Trail Blazers have picked up the pace, at least during preseason

26:35 Should we worry about how many fouls Nurkic is committing?

28:40 Nurkic offense, getting the ball at the post #feetwork, why he can’t finish

33:55 Backup ball-handling Evan Turner is hanging out on the post—and it looks like it’s working

34:45 Andre Miller talk!

40:25 Is Turner getting so much time as backup PG because Shabazz is out, because Crabbe is gone, or is it better utilization?

41:35 How Portland’s offense is different this preseason from last year. Right now they are going with more spot-up and transition plays than pick-and-roll (their usual bread and butter)

43:55 Efforts to get their shot off faster

49:10 New offensive wrinkles that have guys taking shots from different spots on the floor

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Dan and Tara will be at the Blazer’s Edge Opening Night Viewing Party with Peter Sampson of Blazer’s Edge Radio. Stop by and say “Hi”!