Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Considering their ages, their potential contract status at that time, and their games that appear to fit very well together, that could be a legitimate dynasty in the making.
In case you haven't noticed, I'm posting essentially on a weekly basis until camp starts and The Moderator is MIA at the moment. We'll be back to daily business here in about a month.
And yes, I've noticed how awesome Team USA looks. Carmelo is still awesome in that format, potentially the best player in the world at that sytle of game. Kobe's defense and Redd's snipering is the difference and could make them borderline unbeatable in China. I also still think Oden will be on this team when they head to the Far East.
Thursday, August 23, 2007
- Carmelo, LeBron, and Kobe do kind of look awkward on the floor together. I actually kind of wonder if LeBron is a good fit for this style of play. Carmelo clearly is, he's our best international player by a mile, and Kobe is just so dominant on both ends of the floor that he has to play. If LeBron can turn into the passer of the 3, then they could be almost unstoppable.
- Kobe's defense is a serious upgrade, as is Tayshawn Prince coming off the bench.
- I like Chris Paul as much as the next guy, but Jason Kidd and Chauncey Billups are better for this style. They're much more in control and set up guys in the exact position to hit shots.
- Michael Redd makes a huge difference, Team USA would be the world champions right now if they'd had him. You just simply can't sit back in a 2-3 zone with him on the floor. And when the back court is Billups, Kobe, Redd, they'll just destroy a 2-3 zone. Then when you come out of it Kobe just takes his guy for an easy bucket.
- Greg Oden is going to be on this team next year. If Tyson Chandler is on it right now, then it's a no brainer Oden will be going to China. Plus they're going to need another athletic big man to play along side Howard against teams like Greece.
Some final scoring numbers: Carmelo had 17, Michael Redd 17, Kobe had 14, Amare 16, Dwight Howard 12, and LeBron had 11.
Update: How come nobody has told me about the sweetest bald spot in the league? Everyone knows Manu's is great, and it is, but apparently Michael Redd developed a great one over the summer. Wait till you see it, it's quite enjoyable.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Ime Udoka is finalizing his deal with the Spurs. Should be a good fit, he's kind of a poor man's Bruce Bowen anyway.
Aldridge has left the Washington Generals portion of the US National Team scrimmages. Apparently he has some discomfort in his heel and is going to rest up for camp. I have a feeling Aldridge is going to lead the team in scoring and rebounding this season. I know Roy's the popular pick, but Aldridge could thrive with Oden getting all the attention. He's my pick to make The Leap this year.
Rudy Fernandez is tearing it up for the Spanish National Team over in Europe, putting up 16 and 7 in a 93-69 victory over Venezuela, which is odd because Venezuela is most definitely not in Europe. Sergio is also on that team, had a 6 points and an assist (hat tip to the Oregonian's Blazer Blog for that story).
And...that's about it. It's pretty dead around here. Football is on the TV again, baseball games are starting to feel a lot more tense, which means basketball season is right around the corner. Hang in there.
Saturday, August 04, 2007
Thursday, August 02, 2007
They open the season in San Antonio on October 30th. That's right, the home of the Champs while they hang their banner and Oden's first game will be against Tim Duncan. Thanks for that.
They make their triumphant return to Christmas Day basketball. They will be the third game of the annual triple header, hosting the Sonics. You might notice that means Durant v Oden I will be quite the spectacle here in the Rose City.
Some other first impressions, San Antonio, Dallas twice, and a 4 team Eastern roadie in the first month of the season. Yikes. They have two 6 game home stands, one in December and one in late January/early February, and they have a monster roadie in January, 7 games in 10 days that goes Toronto, Jersey, Boston, Miami, Orlando, Atlanta, New Orleans.
If you're thinking playoff push in April, they got no favors handed to them. They play the Lakers twice, Houston, San Antonio, Dallas and Phoenix in 6 of their 8 April games.
Wednesday, August 01, 2007
Oden will likely not play for Team USA this year. He's going to rest up and get ready for his rookie season. I think this is good for the Blazers obviously, Oden will have plenty of chances to play for Team USA down the road.
Kevin Pritchard recently told the Oregonian that the roster is set and us fans shouldn't expect any other major moves. That makes it all but certain that Outlaw or Jones will be the starting small forward on opening night, with Martell Webster being the long shot.
The Blazers are about one draft away from setting up their own team in Europe with all the players they've got stashed over there.
The Garnett deal is obviously good for the Blazers in the short term. They've moved to the third best team in their division, with the Sonics and Wolves being arguably the two worst teams in the Western Conference. I do kind of like the nucleus the Wolves are starting with, and with all their draft picks they kind of look like the Blazers two years ago.
As for the Celtics, in honor of The Donaghy, two days ago they were 100-1 to win the NBA Title, today they're 5-1. They were 75-1 to win the East and are now 5-2. That says about all you need to know about the deal from their end.