Tag:Brandon Roy
Posted on: February 8, 2011 11:46 pm
Edited on: February 9, 2011 12:04 am
 

McMillan pumps brakes on Brandon Roy's return

Portland Trail Blazers coach Nate McMillan says he "doesn't foresee" guard Brandon Roy playing this weekend. Posted by Ben Golliver. nate-brandon

On Monday, we noted that Portland Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy told The Oregonian that he planned to return to the court this weekend. Roy, of course, is a little more than three weeks removed from dual arthroscopic knee surgeries.

A few hours after Roy made his declaration, Blazers coach Nate McMillan was noncommittal regarding Roy's timeline, saying post-game: "I'll see if these guys show up for practice and we'll go from there. As far as them playing this weekend, that hasn't been decided by us."

On Tuesday, McMillan went further than that, telling Blazers broadcasters Mike Barrett and Mike Rice that he "doesn't foresee" Roy playing this weekend. "We have to [take a cautious approach] ... Brandon has been cleared to practice, he has been doing some running on his own, shooting when the team has been out of town. He has been cleared to practice, there is no set date or game for him to return."

McMillan said Roy would start practicing with his teammates this week. "The plan right now is to limit his time in practice, slowly work him back. he's been off for two months. He will be allowed to go live in practice for about 30 minutes. After a day or so that will increase a bit and we'll see how he feels."

McMillan then stated twice that he didn't see Roy's comeback taking place this weekend, when the Blazers travel to Toronto to face the Raptors on Feb. 11 and to Detroit to face the Pistons on Feb. 13. "I don't foresee Brandon playing this weekend. We need to get him some time on the practice court and see how he responds to that," McMillan said.

Asked if he might be swayed by a strong performance during practice this week, McMillan just laughed and repeated, "I don't foresee him playing this weekend."
Posted on: February 7, 2011 9:22 pm
 

Brandon Roy to return this week

Posted by Royce Young

Hey, Portland, finally some news that lands on the good side.

Via Jason Quick's of The Oregonian's Twitter, Blazer guard Brandon Roy is set to return to play this week, maybe against Toronto but likely versus Detroit. Roy has sat out the past few weeks because of ongoing knee issues that led to him having arthtroscopic surgery.

Roy was reportedly cleared for full contact drills on Friday and but said he wants a couple practices before playing. He told Quick that when he returns, he wants to come off the bench. I'm speculating, but I wouldn't think Roy would play more than 30 minutes, at least for the first few weeks.

Roy last played Dec. 17 and has missed 28 games for Portland. Even when he returns, he probably won't be 100 percent, but his shutting it down was definitely a good thing. Hopefully he'll have a little more lift and a little more ability to play well for the Blazers down the stretch.

Currently the Blazers are 27-24, fourth in the Northwest and hanging on to eighth in the West. They've once again been killed by injuries, but maybe Roy's return will spark them back to the good side of health. Who am I kidding, but hey, one can hope.
Posted on: February 3, 2011 2:36 am
Edited on: February 3, 2011 2:40 am
 

Andre Miller doesn't care if Blazers trade him

Portland Trail Blazers point guard Andre Miller says he doesn't really care if he's traded prior to the NBA trade deadline. Posted by Ben Golliver. andre-miller

The Portland Trail Blazers had their season self-combust due to injuries, and any hope of entering a championship window -- building around Brandon Roy, Greg Oden and LaMarcus Aldridge -- has disappeared entirely. As such, it's crossroads time for new Blazers GM Rich Cho: to rebuild or to stay the course?

Rebuilding is the likely play, but that would require going young and shedding some of the team's older players with big-dollar deals in the name of flexibility. One of those players could be veteran point guard Andre Miller, who had his name floated in trade rumors last year and earlier this season as well.

NBA Fanhouse reports that Miller is indifferent to the trade talk.
"I don't really care, really,'' Miller said when asked in a FanHouse interview Wednesday whether his hope now is to remain in Portland rather than be traded. "You know what I'm saying? I would like to stay put, but it's a business and anything can happen.''
When asked if he believes there's a decent chance he'll be moved by the Feb. 24 trade deadline, Miller said, "Yeah. Yeah.''
"There's a chance,'' Miller said. "A lot of guys can get moved. Where? I don't know. At this point, hopefully it's not a team that's rebuilding. I wouldn't want to go back to like a Philly situation.''
Miller is a straight-talking, matter-of-fact speaker, so his blunt honesty shouldn't catch anyone by surprise. While Miller is still productive and a key piece of the Blazers team this season -- averaging 13.1 points, 7.1 assists and 3.7 rebounds -- as the team's only starting-quality point guard, his theoretical usefulness for the Blazers has come and gone. 

When Miller was signed in the summer of 2009, it was with the idea that he would help provide veteran leadership to a young team that was looking to take the next step in the playoffs. With Roy and Oden out of the picture indefinitely, the Blazers are now looking to build around Aldridge, wing Nicolas Batum and guard Wesley Matthews, a much less formidable trio. While Miller was supposed to guide the ship, that ship has sailed off in a totally different direction, replaced by a much less imposing dinghy. 

Miller is on the books for $7.3 million this season and a team option $7.8 million for next season, so a team that traded for him could simply let him walk this summer without any future financial obligation. He therefore would have appeal both to contenders looking to increase their depth without compromising their long-term flexibility and to rebuilding teams that are simply looking to dump a longer-term contract.

It also shouldn't be a huge surprise that Miller isn't as emotionally tied to Portland as he might have been in the past. He came to Portland with the goal of advancing out of the first round of the playoffs, to put a stamp on a long, successful NBA career. He hasn't accomplished that goal and he has no real ties to the area. If a contender was interested, who would blame him for reciprocating that interest and chasing playoff success somewhere else? 

Miller, with his on-the-ground game and savvy play, has plenty of NBA miles left. But he's nearing the end of his run as a game-changing starter. Whether he is moved prior to the deadline, during draft season or next year as an expiring contract remains an open question. The problem for Portland, of course, is the same one they have dealt with for a decade: Who can they find that is better?
Posted on: February 2, 2011 11:27 am
Edited on: February 2, 2011 11:29 am
 

Game Changer: LMA drops 40

The Rockets keep bugging the Lakers, DMC gets into it with KG, and LaMarcus Aldridge has the game of his life, all in today's Game Changer. 
Posted by Matt Moore

THE BIG ONE: LMA TAKES OVER TO KEEP PORTLAND ALIVE

LaMarcus Aldridge has become a complete player this season, and has gone from good player to star. No further proof is needed beyond the performance Aldridge gave Tuesday night in the Blazers' 99-86 win over the Western-Conference-leading San Antonio Spurs. Aldridge dropped 40 on the Spurs, with a barrage of inside layups, dunks, and perimeter mid-range jumpers. See for yourself, in the shot chart from our GameTracker: 



7-13 on jumpers? That'll do, LMA. That'll do. Aldridge made a strong case for All-Star reserve in front of the coach for the Western team, not only with his shooting display to go along with 11 rebounds.  Aldridge has become the focal point of the Blazers, and he's the reason they're hanging onto the 8th spot in the West. That Aldridge has become the focal point after so often being passed over by Blazers management and fans is equally notable. First it was Brandon Roy, then Greg Oden, then Andre Miller, and most recently sophomore Wesley Matthews. But with Roy and Oden on the shelf, Miller marginalized by age, and Matthews still learning consistency, it's fallen upon Aldridge to shoulder the team. And he's risen to that challenge. 

Patty Mills at one point lobbed a dangerous, ill-advised pass into traffic for Aldridge. Mills knew it was a poor pass, but trusted in Aldridge to make a play. Aldridge nabbed the pass and nearly threw it down, drawing a foul. That's trust in your star, and the Blazers have it. That Aldridge has had to wait so long to reach this level must make it all the more worth it. Always the consolation prize, with the Blazers hopes for a title run with their young core vanished into a mist of lost opportunities, Aldridge is now the Blazers' best hope moving forward. He's a legitimate star to build around. 

For the Spurs, this game serves as a warning. The Spurs had no one to extend their perimeter defense against Aldridge with.  DeJuan Blair is not mobile enough and Duncan is unable to cover the distance and recover. As a result, Aldridge dropped the array of mid-range top-of-the-key shots you see above.  It's his sweet spot, just as Dirk's is the corner elbow, and David West's is the 16-foot baseline. All give the Spurs problems. Stretch fours are a problem for the Spurs, and they're going to be seeing a lot of them in the playoffs. Meanwhile, their offense sputtered and their defense wasn't able to hit the gear they're going to need in the playoffs.

Not the way they wanted to start the rodeo road trip. 


GO-GO-GADGET LINE OF THE NIGHT:

Aldridge, obviously.

Runners-Up:

Kobe Bryant: 32 points, 6 rebounds, 11 assists

Luis Scola: 24 points, 15 rebounds, 3 assists

AN UGLY COIN FLIP

The Celtics and Kings engaged in a pretty brutal standoff with the officials Tuesday night. The Celtics played their usual brand of brutal, physical, abrasive style, swiping, clubbing, shouldering, and creating so much contact the officials couldn't call everything. And when they did call something, the Celtics reacted with their usual outpouring of incredulity. What the Celtics weren't expecting was for the Kings to attempt the same approach. The Kings sped the pace up, which the Celtics hate, and then got aggressive down low, repeatedly blocking Kendrick Perkins, Kevin Garnett, and Glen Davis. That helped the Kings to a three-possession lead, which of course the Kings blew down the stretch when their entire offense came unglued as the Celtics buckled down. 

The most interesting part of the game was the interaction between DeMarcus Cousins and Kevin Garnett. Garnett did his usual "Look at me, I'm so crazy" act, hitting himself and mumbling obscenities. Cousins, for the most part, seemed off-put by Garnett's defense of him in the post, which involved a lot of slapping at the ball, missing, and hitting Cousins, then predictably getting the call because it's Kevin Garnett versus a rookie.  Cousins did mouth off to Garnett once, prompting Rajon Rondo to try and ease him back with his hand, which caused Cousins to slap the hand away, ending in Rondo shoving him and drawing a technical. It was a weird mirror image to Garnett's own behavior, if obviously less mature. 

Cousins was brilliant on offense, hitting everything from tap-backs and fadeaways to three-pointers.  But on defense, he too often lazed around getting back, didn't commit off-ball, and wound up in poor position. Imagine if the kid had a work ethic. 

LAKERS FINALLY FIGURE OUT THEY'RE TALL

The Lakers needed a win, and an injured, short-handed, small, poor defensively Rockets team was the perfect cure for what ails them.  Of course, for 48 minutes, the Lakers refused to take their medicine, and the Rockets used crack perimeter shooting and savvy ball movement to outwit the Lakers on their way to overtime. The Lakers would make a run by being tall and very good at basketball, the Rockets would call timeout, and then the Lakers would completely go away from everything that worked previously. Sure, the Lakers were missing Andrew Bynum. But the Rockets were missing Yao Ming, obviously, so it's not like they were full strength.

Meanwhile Pau Gasol drifted and drifted until overtime. Kobe Bryant dished seven assists before he scored 7 points in the first quarter, then started to take over offensively again.  Guess when the Rockets came back?  Meanwhile, he went back to distributing and finding Lamar Odom late, which allowed the Lakers to close the deficit and force overtime. In the extra period, it was simple physics.  The Lakers are tall and long, the Rockets are short.  The end. 

It wasn't a great win for the Lakers, but it's a win, and it's a start for their way back.
Posted on: January 29, 2011 5:01 pm
 

Portland's roster will likely be changing soon

Posted by Royce Young

The Trail Blazer roster is probably going to see a change before the Feb. 24 trade deadline. And I don't mean more people are going to get injuried. Well, fingers crossed on that.

But general manager Rich Cho told The Oregonian that the Blazers are definitely in the market to make a move.

"I'd say the chances are pretty good," Cho said of making a deal. "We are being pretty active, put it that way."

Well, that begs the question: What type of move? Something small to keep trying to win with the current core or something big like moving Andre Miller, Marcus Camby or maybe even Brandon Roy?

Give us more Rich, please.

"This team is an average to a little-above average team, and our record reflects that," Cho said. "And there's not going to be any quick fix to make it into a championship team. This is going to be a process ... But I think you have to think short term and long term. We are not going to sacrifice a long-term goal for a short-term benefit."

See, now that's interesting. Cho openly admits that the team is kind of mediocre in its current state. Which is certainly is. With all the injuries, the Blazers sit in eighth at 25-22. They aren't built to move up much higher in the standings right now. The team is average and they just aren't going anywhere right now.

But just like his former boss Sam Presti, Cho uses the word "process," which is a good word, especially for a team like Portland. There isn't an eay answer for them. Cho is in a tough spot. His franchise player has two bad knees, Greg Oden, well, you know, and plus anyone on the roster is at risk of hurting themselves at all times.

Yet the team is still in the playoff hunt. So Cho has decide if the current core plus an extra piece or two can make a push now or if he needs to start dealing things like Camby and Miller for young assets. Either decision won't be universally popular, but he's going to have to pick. The team can't stay as-is. Because like Cho said, it's not going anywhere that way.
Posted on: January 28, 2011 4:37 am
Edited on: January 28, 2011 12:59 pm
 

Nicolas Batum's MRI negative, day-to-day

Portland Trail Blazers forward Nicolas Batum suffered an injury to his left knee on Thursday night and will undergo an MRI. Posted by Ben Golliver.
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Update (12:58 PM Friday): The Blazers have announced that Batum's MRI came back negative. The team said that Batum "has a bone contusion and is listed as day to day." Another bullet dodged for the Blazers.
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Yes, you've heard this story from Portland before: a key member of the Trail Blazers is set to undergo an MRI on his knee after injuring it. This time around, it's starting small forward Nicolas Batum, who injured his left knee while defending Boston Celtics forward Paul Pierce on Thursday night. Batum is set to undergo an MRI on Friday morning.

The injury occurred during second quarter action, as Batum back-pedaled while Pierce drove hard to the hoop. There was no apparent contact and Batum never left the ground. Nevertheless, he was in immediate pain after the play and the Blazers were forced to take a timeout to remove him from the game. He exited the court, limping, and headed straight for the locker room.

Here's a look at the video.


  After the game, Batum, who appeared to be in a bit of shock or disbelief, was adamant that the injury will not require surgery. "I'm OK, Batum said. "Not worried. No surgery. I'm sure I won't get surgery. I'm sure. I know my body. I've had a couple of surgeries before. I know when I need surgery. For my shoulder, I knew I was going to need surgery. When I broke my foot five years ago, I knew I would need surgery."

However, Batum was unable to flex his left leg much and he used crutches -- which he said were precautionary -- to leave the arena. Batum admitted that there was some swelling on his knee but said it was just "a little bit."

Asked to describe how the injury happened, Batum replied, "I tried to block Paul Pierce, I tried to jump, I couldn't jump, I don't know why and I felt something stretch in my knee."

Portland has undergone an unprecedented rash of knee injuries this season. Center Greg Oden, guard Elliot Williams and former big man Jeff Pendergraph, who was released, all underwent season-ending knee surgeries since the start of training camp. All-Star guard Brandon Roy is out indefinitely after undergoing dual arthroscopic knee surgeries and center Marcus Camby is out for a few weeks after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery earlier this month. 

The Blazers did dodge one bullet this week, as power forward LaMarcus Aldridge, by far the team's best remaining healthy player, got good news on an MRI and X-rays taken on his sore right hip, as they revealed only a contusion.

Batum, a third-year player from France, starts at small forward and is averaging 12 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 31 minutes per game so far this season. He mised much of last season after undergoing shoulder surgery.
Posted on: January 26, 2011 8:29 pm
Edited on: January 26, 2011 8:31 pm
 

Brandon Roy says he won't ever be 100 percent

Posted by Royce Young

Brandon Roy is making a little bit of progress. Not necessarily with his health and knee problems, but with his mental state.

A couple months ago, Roy appeared to be having issues accepting his lingering knee problems that are going to affect his career from here on out. He didn't understand why he couldn't just keep playing.

But in speaking with  95.5 The Game in Portland, Roy admitted what we all really already know.
“Well I don’t think medically I will ever be able to get back to 100%.  The doctors do feel confident that I can get back to a high level of basketball.  I don’t want to say to an all-star level because coaches boast those things every year and different guys deserve them but they do feel like I can get to that level where I can continue to help this team and produce at a high level.  Now we are just trying to figure some things out to try to calm the knees down. 

They feel good now and the biggest thing now is going to be once I start playing basketball day-in and day-out how they feel, but I am confident that I can get back to a high level but the biggest thing is that I don’t get a ahead of myself right now and continue to take it slow and really listen to the doctors.  I think in the past there was times I maybe had stepped on their toes a little bit and try to rush back but this time I am trying to be patient and really listen to them.”
Roy still has visions of getting back to a really productive level and why shouldn't he? His career isn't over yet. He's still young. He's going to have to overcome some pretty serious adversity, but nothing says he can't reinvent himself as a new player that does new things. He might not be the Brandon Roy that I fell in love with over his first few years, but he can still play.

Roy has missed the past few weeks because of the knee issues. He's been sitting resting the knee following another arthroscopic procedure, hopefully giving him the chance to get back and play for the Blazers during their stretch run. However, there was an option of season-ending surgery on the table, but Roy continues to remain optimistic.
Posted on: January 19, 2011 12:20 am
Edited on: January 19, 2011 12:22 am
 

Marcus Camby to have knee surgery

Marcus Camby to have surgery on left knee to repair torn mensicus. No timeline set for return.
Posted by Matt Moore

It would be funny, if it weren't so sad. 

The Blazers have another player undergoing surgery. Yes, knee surgery. No, it is not Greg Oden, he just had it. No, it is not Brandon Roy. That was last week. No, it is not Joel Przybilla, thankfully. That was last year. Twice. 

No, this time it's Marcus Camby who the Oregonian reports will undergo surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. The Blazers soon confirmed the report. A timetable for Camby's return has not been released yet. 

Should the surgery be to remove the meniscus, Camby could be out much longer, but there has been no indication that the surgery is for removal and not repair. Camby's known as a pretty tough customer so a return ahead of schedule isn't out of the question, but Camby's also made noise for several years about heading towards retirement. You have to wonder if he's getting worn out of these kinds of things. An average return for a meniscus repair is 4-6 weeks. 

In the meantime, the Blazers will suffer through their fifth player undergoing knee surgery this season. Five. Oden, Roy, rookie Elliot Williams, Jeff Pendergraph, and now Camby. This is the third center this season, fourth to miss some time this season due to knee surgery (Przybilla missing significant time in the beginning). This has moved beyond ridiculous. It's into patently absurd. It's ludicrous. There's a book somewhere in spending some time with Phoenix's training staff, and then spending some time with the Blazers' training staff. Oden having a bad string of luck is one thing, as is Roy's condition which was pre-existing to when he was drafted. But five players in the span of a season undergoing knee surgery? Is the ground made of adamantium there?  Is the water poisoned with anti-knee fungus? Is it just the freaking rain? 

Somewhere along the way, the pattern becomes such that you have to be concerned about it long-term. In the meantime, Nate McMillan will have to somehow find a way to rally the troops in the face of even more adversity. This for a team that two seasons ago looked set to become a title contender. 

Like I said, it'd be funny if it weren't so sad. 
 
 
 
 
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