LA gets his center
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  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 09/30/2013 11:54 PM

    A few takes from media day with LaMarcus.  Not perfectly transcribed "you know," but the context is unchanged.  This was one of the interviews from today.  I think Casey was asking questions in this one with some other local media.

     

    Just talked to Neil, and Neil was asking what was the one thing I really wanted, needed? And I said, a true center to play with.  And then within 2 weeks [laughing] we had Lopez. I wanted to play with a big man.  I played with JJ which was fun, and a taste of Oden which was exciting at times.  Camby was fun be he’s not dominate.  I play with Joel, but he was at the end of his career.  So having a young big man sounds fun to me.

     

    I think Lopez is the key [on defense].  I’m not 7’2” and massive like he is.  Offensively, I think he’ll give me more single coverage.  I’ll be able to crash the offensive boards cause I’m gonna have a smaller guy on me, and defensively, him trying to block shots is gonna allow me to block more shots. ‘Cause Hickson didn’t block shots. It wasn’t as positive.  If Lopez blocks 2 to 3 shots, and I’m blocking 1 or 2 that’s pretty good.  I’m happy to have him here.

    My goal is being a double-double guy.  Last year was 9, this year ['s goal] is 10. I think having Robin will allow me to do that.  Robin isn't gonna take rebounds outta my hands. [laughs] (clearly a reaction to Hickson) He’s gonna box out and I can go board more.  He’s not gonna take rebound from me. He’s gonna carve out space so I can get to the boards.

     

    More on Lopez in a separate interview with Mike Barret:

    On Lopez:  Lopez did not disappoint [in scrimages thus far]. I like Lopez's size to control the middle, block shots, and he can score down there.  Robin has a different mind set.  He doesn't have other things going on. It's gonna be nice out there to play with a guy that doesn't have other motives. Robin just want to play hard, and he wants to win.  He's a dominante rim protector that I can grow with.  I blocked shots last year but Hickson didn't, so it was a [wash].

    Asked about play-off goals.

    My goal right now is training camp. We're gonna play defense first, and offense second. Me lopez in Nic, that's a big line up.

     

    I think the big (pun intended) take away here is that Lopez is a huge upgrade in LA's mind, and will help him player better, as well as the entire team.  His candid comments on JJ aren't news if you follow Portland at all, but you'd think it was for some fans out there:  JJ has other "motives," took rebounds that would otherwise have been Blazer rebounds, and didn't block shots or clog the paint.  I just think it's saying something when your All-Star says a player had other "motives" and contrasts that with someone that wants to just play hard and win.

  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 10/01/2013 11:48 AM

    Throwing JJ under the bus is a tactless thing to do. Be excited about Lopez but there is no reason to bad mouth someone who is no longer on the team. 


    Maybe just maybe JJ would have been more effective on defense if you did not force him to play Center, when you would have been more effective with your size and length than he was LA. 


    Everyone knows JJ was not a great fit or a dynamic defender but he played hard and did what was asked of him. If the dude had other motives maybe is was because he was on a 1 year contract for 4 million and playing out of position. 


    The point is be happy about Lopez but do not blame others especially if they are not around to defend themselves.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. RipCity 14
    RipCity 14
    Posts: 941

    Posted 10/01/2013 1:34 PM

    He didn't really bad mouth JJ. JJ couldn't wasn't the greatest at boxing out especially since the people he was supposed to box out were bigger than him, so he would just go hard at the boards. Sometimes that meant taking away opportunities from his team mates. 

    I am a fan of Raymond Felton. Haha, seriously though I'm a fan of Batum's Lobs and JJ's Slams.
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 10/01/2013 1:42 PM

    Hickson is gone no reason to mention him let alone go into depth maybe fanatic was just highlighting the Hickson comments but the point was he is the teams leader take responsibility for your own short comings and don't blame anyone else.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 10/01/2013 2:33 PM

    I took nothing malicious about LA's comments. Wes echo'd similar dificiencies from his perspective on the wing. I do however think for all the fans that talk about heart, it's clear that JJ's heart wasn't in it to win it... primarily at least. Say what you will, but I have a lot of respect for LA, the All-Star and team leader, who knows his team and himself and where improvement is needed.

     

    If anything, I think he through Blazer fans under the bus who gloated over Hickson's heart while questioning the heart of others on the team.

  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 10/01/2013 2:35 PM

    As for JJ's size, you can't really make excuses for a guy that doesn't box out because he is in selfish pursuit of rebounds.
  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 10/01/2013 2:39 PM

    Posted By cmeese47 on 10/01/2013 1:42 PM

    Hickson is gone no reason to mention him let alone go into depth maybe fanatic was just highlighting the Hickson comments but the point was he is the teams leader take responsibility for your own short comings and don't blame anyone else.


    Please read this again.  Don't mention ANY player that isn't a Blazer, or my name for that matter, and you have yourself a deal.

    (see: Jimmy Butter)   At least Hickson actually played for Portland.  Just wow.

  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 10/01/2013 4:43 PM

    Please read again that post was designated towards the teams leader LA, he should not be mentioning players no longer with the team. 


    LA is an all star and should be excited about Lopez, but he can do that without bad mouthing Hickson, whether his comments were accurate or not. 

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 10/01/2013 9:13 PM

    "This is what I liked best of LA’s quote, although I probably cut out some “you know”s, the context:

    (quotes are in OP)

    Both interviews reference JJ and the upgrade LA feels he has to take his game to the next level. The comments regarding rebounds echo what a study by some “stats geek” with ESPN pointed out about JJ not improving team rebounding and concluding (although his analysis had it’s limitations) that JJ stole rebounds. Hickson didn’t exactly block shots, clog up the paint, box out, or play connected team defense very well either. But that’s kinda why he’s only a $3-5 mil/year guy. Nothing personal. Hickson just wasn’t a good fit for the play-off direction the Blazers are headed.

    What really stuck out though was having our All-Star player candidly stating that Hickson had other “motives” and contrasts that with Lopez who he says just wants to play hard and win. Players know players. I’m sure there are still some Blazer fans that are disappointed that Portland let Hickson walk, and still shaking their heads why Portland couldn’t have resigned him for what Denver paid. Perhaps this can provide some more definitive closure.

    by Blazer Fanatic on Oct 1, 2013 | 4:17 AM reply 13 recs.

     

    Lots of avid Blazer fans on BE are more than in agreement with this observation. I really appriciate how Stotts, LA, Wes, Batum, Olshey, Lopez... the entire team really, was very candid about last season, and about the furture during media day. I think it shows a great deal of character and care about the team to be honest about the past and realistic about the future, to understand the problems in order to better work on fixing them.

     

    Nothing malicious about LA's comment on Hickson. He was both candid and honest. And as a fan, I really appriciate it. And Lopez is gonna be "big" time for Portland this season.

     

    Stotts even went so far as to take complete ownership of the success or failure of the team this season.  Something you just don't see from coaches on his contract.  That Olshey and Allen gave him a team he can win with, and it's up to him to get put those wins in the books.  I knew this guy would be a decent fit for Portland when he was hired, but even I didn't know he'd be this good for the team.  Just a really positive, level headed, and supportive coach with the know how to bring an exciting brand of basketball and wins back to Rip City.  Very refreshing. 

  1. riverman
    riverman
    Posts: 1431

    Posted 10/01/2013 9:40 PM

    I really liked LA's interview and I really like everything about Robin Lopez. If LaMarcus has something to say about JJ's deficiency as a team mate, I'll listen. This wasn't vicious in tone or even mildly aggressive. It was matter of fact and I think LaMarcus knows a bit more about the guy than all of the fans put together. LaMarcus looks and sounds really focused this season.
    I am a fan of A team that plays like Tower of Power on a big stage on a good night
  1. fredisdead
    fredisdead
    Posts: 62

    Posted 10/03/2013 2:57 AM

    should be a like button so i can just like rivermans post cause i agree 

  1. RipCity 14
    RipCity 14
    Posts: 941

    Posted 10/05/2013 10:11 AM

    Maybe Cmeese is onto something, sounds like there's something going on between LMA and JJ here. Some beef or something? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vk2A5qvhQsc

    I am a fan of Raymond Felton. Haha, seriously though I'm a fan of Batum's Lobs and JJ's Slams.
  1. riverman
    riverman
    Posts: 1431

    Posted 10/05/2013 10:28 AM

    JJ was working for a PF job last season. He actually fouled his own teammates regularly to get rebounds. Nic and LaMarcus were both victims of rebounds grabbed out of their hands. JJ had great hustle and no knock on his skills but he didn't make his teammates better. I agree with LA about this one. I forget which game, but JJ actually hooked Batum's shoulder and after that it was sore for half a season. Wonder why LA and Nic got theirs from outside the paint? JJ is part of that.
    I am a fan of A team that plays like Tower of Power on a big stage on a good night
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 10/05/2013 11:20 AM

    maybe everyone should have attacked the glass as hard as JJ did.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. riverman
    riverman
    Posts: 1431

    Posted 10/05/2013 12:10 PM

    Well, that's my 2 cents on JJs contribution to last season. I've played sports with reckless teammates before. Team defense requires boxing out for teammates, not fouling them and although I didn't see every game, I saw JJ at times being all about JJ and not about proper defense. In his favor, he was out of position all season pretty much. Bottom line, I agree with LA's assesment.
    I am a fan of A team that plays like Tower of Power on a big stage on a good night
  1. cmeese47
    cmeese47
    Posts: 2735

    Posted 10/05/2013 12:42 PM

    I am not going to argue your point it makes sense my issue was he did not need to mention JJ at all since he is gone. Plus the whole team was terrible at boxing out and overall team defense.

    I am a fan of Getting Defensive Players This Summer.
  1. Blazer Fanatic
    Blazer Fanatic
    Posts: 758

    Posted 10/05/2013 7:29 PM

    You can't expect to correct the future if you aren't honest about the past.  There was nothing malicious about LA's comments.  Sometimes the truth hurts. 

     

    Defense starts with a strong anchor -  JJ was no anchor.  Adding insult to injury was JJ being benched during games for selfish and poor play, not from any fan reaction to what we witnessed.  This wasn't insult coming from fans, this was tough love coming from a coach that knows his team.

     

    In almost all cases where fans didn't agree with my opinion or take on JJ, it is what it is.  It's part of being a fan.  But with what has been an ongoing, and silly debate with posters like cmeese and blazermaniac, all I can say is, you 2 were DEAD WRONG about Hickson. 

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