Trail Blazers training camp begins next Tuesday, October 1st. As we enter the month of M&M commercials and pumpkin carving, so too do we enter the month of basketball. Pre-season begins for the Blazers on Monday, October 7th, and the regular season itself begins on Tuesday, October 29th (my favorite day of the year). It’s almost time for the Blazers to reel it in for the summer and officially prepare for the coming year.
This means that every last Blazer, diligent or otherwise, will attend mandated practices so they can iron out as many kinks as possible by late October. There are seven new Blazers on the roster this year, so there are sure to be some wrinkles. You can’t replace half your team and expect instant chemistry. The clock is ticking away the seconds until it absolutely matters.
This year’s non-Blazers to attend training camp are 2012 Mississippi State graduate Dee Bost, 2013 University of Oregon graduate E.J. Singler, and 2013 North Carolina State graduate Richard Howell. Combined with Portland’s guaranteed 15 man roster, the Blazers will have enough warm bodies for five on five with four men on each bench.
Up until this point, the most team basketball that the Blazers have played in the offseason has been summer league, and that excluded their core players. Yes they’ve practiced independently and, I’m sure, with each other from time to time, but now they will be corralled in the Rose City all at once and worked into Stotts’ system. In less than one week, the Blazers will learn who is made of what.