Are the Portland Trail Blazers For Real?

Posted: December 10, 2013 by ericbernsen in NBA, Sports
Tags: , , , ,

While teams like the Brooklyn Nets and the New York Knicks have struggled to start the season, out in the Western Conference the Portland Trail Blazers have taken the league by storm as the team has greatly exceeded their expectations. The team is 18-4 and has won eight out if its last ten games, defeating strong opponents such as the Oklahoma City Thunder and Indiana Pacers. Portland has only lost twice at home, one of which being a buzzer-beater defeat at the hands of Dallas. Needless to say, people are excited in Oregon as the team is off to its best start since the 1990-1991 season. In a potent Western Conference, the question on everyone’s mind is how do the Trail Blazers keep winning? Let’s take a look at some of the key reasons.

  • Lamarcus Aldridge: Going into the season, there was some chatter about Aldridge wanting to get out of Portland and move to a bigger market team. Aldridge has put an end to that talk as the All-Star forward is on a tear recently, earning his second Western Conference Player Of The Week honor this year after an impressive 38 point, 13 rebound performance in Portland’s win over the Thunder. He is averaging 23 points and 10 rebounds so far and has taken on a leadership role for the Trail Blazers. As long as Aldridge is playing at this pace, Portland will continue to be a tough team to beat.
  • Offensive Efficiency: While Portland hasn’t been the best team on the defensive side of the ball, they have more than made up for it by being the strongest offensive team in the NBA. The Trail Blazers are shooting about 42% from three-point range, which is absolutely incredible. It is hard for opposing defenses to plan a scheme against hot-shooting, so if Portland continues to shoot lights out they will continue to hold their own against elite teams in the league.
  • Team Confidence/Chemistry: It is obvious that this group is gelling well together as they have not been intimated by top teams like the Thunder or the Spurs. Along with Aldridge, the supporting cast of Mo Williams,  Damien Lillard, and Robin Lopez have played great basketball to start this year off as they all feed off each other. Portland has enjoyed taking everyone by surprise and will continue to prove any naysayers wrong if they keep playing at this astonishing pace.

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