Building the Portland Trail Blazers All-Decade Team (2010-19)

PORTLAND, OR - JANUARY 15: LaMarcus Aldridge #12, Mo Williams #25 and Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images)
PORTLAND, OR - JANUARY 15: LaMarcus Aldridge #12, Mo Williams #25 and Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Portland Trail Blazers
CJ McCollum #3 of the Portland Trail Blazers warms up before Game Seven of the Western Conference Semi-Finals (Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Shooting Guards

Starter: CJ McCollum (2014-19, 411 Games)

It feels like just yesterday CJ McCollum was walking up onto the stage at Barclays Center in New York on the night of the 2014 NBA Draft. Fast forward a few years, and McCollum has a Most Improved Player Award sitting in his trophy case at home and is knocking on the door of his first All-Star Game appearance. Even more surprisingly, CJ has played the third most games in a Blazer uniform of all players on this list.

Entering his seventh NBA season, McCollum has finally made the transition from young kid on the block to a grizzled veteran with playoff experience who will be expected to help cultivate the potential within the team’s younger guards. Since being promoted to the starting lineup, CJ has averaged 21.6 points per game and hit 40.3 percent of his shots from 3-point range. He is the perfect sidekick to Lillard and earns his status as the best shooting guard for the Blazers of the last decade.

Key Reserve: Wesley Matthews (2011-15, 359 Games)

The title of “Key Reserve” doesn’t really do Wesley Matthews justice, does it? That’s hardly the proper way to treat our fan favorite champion after all. In fact, Matthews is skilled enough to potentially even crack the starting lineup of this All-Decade Team at the small forward position; however, standing at only 6-foot-5 and playing all of his minutes for the Blazers at shooting guard limits him to just a backup role.

Matthews averaged 15.4 points while shooting 39.4 percent from beyond the arc during his five years in Portland. Players like Matthews are largely what helped usher in the modern transition to the  pace-and-space basketball we see so often in today’s game. Remember that time he was still wearing his jersey and shooting sleeves in the hospital, supporting the Blazers in the playoffs after rupturing his Achilles? You’d be hard-pressed to find a man who represented the city better.

Extra Reserve: Brandon Roy (2010-11, 112 Games)

At his absolute peak, you could make a pretty genuine argument that Brandon Roy was the best Blazer of the decade — maybe even of all-time. That peak likely came in the 2008-09 season, where he put up career bests in almost every major statistical category and earned a nomination the All-NBA Second Team.

Unfortunately, that performance was over 11 seasons ago and is excluded from the All-Decade Team discussion; his brief longevity is ultimately what hurts his placement on this list. He was still pretty dominant in 2010 however, averaging 21.5 points, 4.7 assists and 4.4 rebounds per game and earning another All-NBA selection. NBA legend Kobe Bryant was even once asked who the hardest player to guard in the Western Conference is, and his answer was some pretty compelling stuff: “Roy 365 days, seven days a week. Roy has no weaknesses in his game.”