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Last week my fellow BLC member, Michelle, and I got to see Patty Mills at a signing at the Just Sports store in Clackamas Town Center. I’ve had the opportunity to meet Patty a couple of times after games this year. From the very beginning of this season Patty was one of the players you could count on 100% to come over and give fans what they wanted, even though at that time his future in Portland was up in the air. However, this meeting in particular got me thinking about how far this team, and more importantly this Aussie, has come.
Take a moment to look back on the incredible season we’ve had with this phenomenal group of talent. We’ve had guys step up in the face of injury and heartbreak; we’ve had a team come together and prove to the NBA that Portland isn’t about to back down no matter the odds. At the center of the Blazers’ accomplishments is a young 6ft Australian point guard out of St. Mary’s who was on the brink of being cut this season. It’s almost crazy to think we were once wondering if Patty Mills would even make the team this season. So what if? What if Patty had been cut and we kept one other rookie to fill the roster spot left open by Jeff Pendergraph being waived? What if Jeff Pendergraph would not have gotten hurt and that roster spot didn’t open up at all? Would we still be fighting to possibly make the 5th seed in the west? Would we see the same amount of energy, heart and hustle demonstrated in the past couple months? Honestly, I think not. I believe the Blazers could’ve made the playoffs, no doubt, but I think the road to that goal would have been a much bumpier one.
Coming into this season, we had an unhappy Rudy Fernandez, injuries and roster changes. We saw ourselves losing games we should’ve dominated and the future looked bleak. All of a sudden we started to see a change. This team started trusting one another and
their chemistry became unquestionable. Whether it was through his insistence on everyone joining twitter, creating nicknames for his teammates (Uncle Cam/Camby Cakes, Big Bro, Wally etc), helping to invent the now trend setting “Three Goggles”, or his constant cheering, towel waving and positive vibes, Patty Mills was a huge contributor to bringing this team back together. Now we see a new life in a team that not only cares about winning and being the best they can be, but a team that honestly cares about one another. Every day over twitter we see this group of guys replying to one another, joking with each other and creating meet ups and trivia games for fans. It’s obvious that these guys love every moment of being a Trail Blazer and it shows in their game. We may have lost a couple of close games recently but this team’s heart and fight is undeniable and one certain Aussie will always be looking to win the day in every way.
Twitter: @AnnaInTheHouse @PDX_BLC
Podcast: On The Air With The BLC Ep. 1
Great write, I couldn't agree more.
I agree Anna. Patty has been a big part of the glue that has kept the team together this year.
word Anna. love me some Patty Cakes.
Great read, totally agree. I have even heard some of the players mention how important Patty has been for chemistry. His enthusiasm and positive attitude are infectious. What he has done for Rudy is probably the most important contribution he's made. For us fans, the twitter thing has been excellent! Seriously glad we didn't have to live out "what if" :)
I think if Jeff had not been hurt we would not have Gerald Wallace and he is a key player in the future of the franchise.
Agree! Patty has been such a gift to the team. He is always the first to high five his teammates and gives off a great vibe on the bench no matter how much he plays in the game. My children and I were lucky enough to meet Patty one night in the locker room and he was just as nice off the court as he seems to be on the court! Glad you are a part of the Blazers Patty! Keep up the good work! Sometimes those on the bench are just as important as those on the court!
I think Patty is the main reason why the guys on the team have such a close relationship on and off the court. Some of my favorite moments during the game actually happen before the ball even tips in the air. Patty will first bump around with Blaze, then he runs and jumps into his teammates, followed by some custom hand shakes, and finally he "pounds the chest" of each of his teammates, boxing style before tip. He is like a 4 year old, always energized!
Patty brought the good chemistry back this year. I don't know where we would have been without him!
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