Apr 10

I've done this before, so I thought I'd give it another try. Last night, I solicited three questions from my twitter followers which I would research and answer here. They didn't disappoint. In fact, the three who responded provided what turned more than just questions. Here we go.

LaMarcus "L-Train" Aldridge and Gerald "Crash" Wallace

1. Teamship (Mike Godsey): What combination of starters has been most successful this season (minimum five starts)?
This answer might be a bit surprising. The Blazers have featured 10 different starting lineups which have included 10 players. Here's the list of starting units and records for the season:

LaMarcus-Nicolas-Dante-Wesley-Andre 7-1
LaMarcus-Nicolas-Gerald-Wesley-Andre 8-3
LaMarcus-Gerald-Marcus-Wesley-Andre 2-1
LaMarcus-Nicolas-Marcus-Wesley-Andre 14-10
LaMarcus-Nicolas-Marcus-Brandon-Andre 6-7
LaMarcus-Nicolas-Joel-Wesley-Andre 4-5
LaMarcus-Wesley-Marcus-Brandon-Andre 3-6
LaMarcus-Nicolas-Marcus-Wesley-Brandon 1-0
LaMarcus-Rudy-Dante-Wesley-Andre 1-0
Rudy-Nicolas-LaMarcus-Wesley-Andre 1-0

I took this a step further, figuring the records of each player as a starter: Rudy 2-0, Dante 8-1, Gerald 10-4, Nicolas 41-26, Wesley 41-26, LaMarcus 47-33, Andre 46-33, Marcus 26-24, Joel 4-5, Brandon 10-13.

Movie Poster for "Daniel Boone, Trailblazer"

2. EowynAmarie: Are there any meanings for the phrase "Trail Blazers" aside from the one referring to the Oregon pioneers?
This one is probably up to perception, but according to some definitions, the term "trail blazer" transcends the days of the pioneers. The term can also refer to someone who is an innovator in any various areas in life. Interestingly enough, there are also several references aside from the Oregon trail. Two British basketball teams and a North Carolina women's recreational hockey association share the name. Most of us have seen Chevy trailblazers as we drive around on the streets. The term Trailblazer also has been utilized to describe a satellite, video game, Iraq war military operation, pipeline, roller coaster, Pennsylvania Railroad passenger train, British television program, and awards in the NAACP and MMVA. In a similar meaning to our Trail Blazers, there was also a 1956 movie under the title, Daniel Boone, Trailblazer.

Former Blazers coach Jack Ramsay

3a. Noafwes2010 (D. Harrison:): How many former Blazer are in the Hall of Fame?
Five players and two coaches are currently in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, and one more will be inducted in August. There's a bit of a caveat to the first two numbers, however, as one was inducted as both a player and a coach. That would be Lenny Wilkins, who played with Portland (1974-75) and coached the team from 1974-76. The other coach, of course, is Dr. Jack Ramsay, who coached the Blazers from 1976 to 1986 and led the Blazers to their only championship in 1977. Blazer players inducted are Clyde Drexler (Blazer 1983-95), Bill Walton (1974-78), Drazen Petrovic (1989-90) and Scottie Pippen (2000-03). As recently announced, center Arvydas Sabonis (1995-01, 2002-03), will be inducted into the HOF in August. Drazen, Arvydas and Fernando Martin (1985-87) also have been inducted into the FBLA Hall of Fame.

3b. Noafwes2010 (D. Harrison:): What three players won rookie of the year as a Blazer?
I think he may have been asking me a bit of trivia on this one, but here goes: The first Blazer, Geoff Petrie, was named co-rookie of the year (along with Boston's Dave Cowens) for the 1970-71. The following season, 1971-72, forward Sydney Wicks won the honor. Finally, current Blazer Brandon Roy won rookie of the year for the 2006-07 season.

As usual, I enjoyed doing this. Stay tuned for round three.

~ Kassandra


  1. Thanks Kassandra, this is a very cool concept. I asked the question hoping you might find the tidbit I found at the Oregon Historical Society's museum, but have since forgotten. There was a group early in Oregon's history that were specifically called the Trailblazers, and I have wondered since if there was even a tiny connection to our local NBA team, even if just as partial inspiration for the name. I need to go back to the museum, because I forgot the specific information on the group and was atypically unable to find any information on it via my usual sources. I was hoping you might run across it and save me a trip, lol! Great info otherwise though.

    by SisillaRiann on 4/10/2011 4:00 PM
  2. Interesting stats Kass. Nice research. Interesting how Dante was so successful as a starter too...

    by Herr on 4/10/2011 5:27 PM
  3. EowynAmarie: i didn't specifically look for that, but it would be interesting. i thought it was interesting how many other labels of the term there were. i didn't name them all, but i thought those to be the most interesting.

    Herr: i was surprised to see Dante's impact, as well. i knew he made great contributions, but when i uncovered the numbers, it was quite telling.

    by Kassandra on 4/10/2011 7:20 PM
  4. Great blog Kasey, but..you already knew that. So the new question becomes. Who does Kasey start for the playoff run? And how does that change if/when one of those starters isn't available (foul trouble, minor injury, etc), even if it's just for the second half of a game.

    by BlockParty aka Teamship on 4/10/2011 9:47 PM
  5. Can you find who were the opposing team in the games Dante started? I like his approach to guarded centers ie out muscling and forcing them to beat him w/ their quickness.

    by Roland on 4/11/2011 3:03 PM
  6. Great information Kassandra. I always love your take on the Blazers. It's just like you to ask people for ideas for you to research. You have a special knack for that.

    by Jennssoldier on 4/13/2011 6:50 PM
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