A Pair of Morning Links

First, a creative look at SLAMOnline.com naming LaMarcus Aldridge the No. 39 best player in the L, slotting him above such guys as Josh Smith, Ron Artest, Baron Davis and Rudy Gay. I thought last season would be his big coming out party in terms of publicity, but that never fully happened. You can just feel that one of these years the Blazers will get off to a hot start and LMA will be putting up 24 and 12 and we’ll suddenly get headlines calling him the most underrated player in the league — similar to what happened to David West a couple seasons ago. For it to happen this year makes just as much sense as anything, especially if the Blazers don’t sign him to an extension before games start (it’ll probably happen by December regardless). You don’t think he’d make sure he got noticed with a contract on the line?

Our other little tidbit is that most of the Blazers are already back and practicing, just as they’ve done the last two years. And who does Mike Barrett say looks really good (via Dwight Jaynes)? Well Greg Oden and Martell Webster of course. Look, I like Oden and Webster just as much as the next guy (and probably more) but put yourself in Barrett’s shoes. You’re a Blazers broadcaster, you know the two guys coming into the season with the most to prove are Oden (coming off a semi-disappointing season) and Webster (coming off a season-long injury), if those two guys look good at all, or anything close to how you think they should look, of course you’re going to single those guys out as looking great when asked about it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure both of them are moving and playing well, but I’m not getting on the hype bandwagon again until I see these two with my own two eyes. There’s just too much at stake for Portland for these guys to play well that they’d have to play significantly awful for anyone to go on record this time of year saying they’re struggling.

  • Charles

    LaMarcus will never post 24 and 12, heck he has a hard enough time getting 22 and 8, and with Greg Oden and Joel Przybilla on the floor and LaMarcus’s propensity to get out an run down the court for easy buckets, it’s not going to happen.

    And I think the most encouraging thing from Mike Barret was not how great Greg and Martell looked, but the development and confidence of Greg’s post game/offensive game. That’s what is encouraging.

  • http://ripcityproject.com Coup

    I meant to imply that LMA would be averaging 24 and 12 during the hot start I mentioned. Not an entire season.

    The jumpers sound great, but again, I’ll wait until I see them. Remember how great Sergio’s shooting looked last Fall? He still only shot 32.5%.