blazerdarren77

Jan 19

My Blazer Memories: Calvin Natt

By blazerdarren77

The one that got away

  I was a big fan of Calvin Natt. He could score and rebound. What I didn't know was that he was an under-sized forward (6' 6" 220 lbs) What set him apart was his strength and his large hands. Natt devoted a lot of time lifting weights. "I had to be strong, because I was usually going against guys three inches taller and 40-to-50 pounds heavier," Natt said. "I had to be tough to survive." In other words, he looked like a shooting guard but played like a power forward.

  

  Natt's best year with the Blazers was in 1982-82 when he led the team in scoring (20.4 ppg). Although he didn't make the all-star team (teammate Jim Paxson was selected) many felt he got snubbed from the roster, myself included. In the spring of 1984, he signed a six year deal with the team. It seemed that there was going to be something special with Natt, Paxson, Mychal Thompson and Lafayette Lever. Then, two months later, it was announced that Natt, Lever, and Wayne Cooper, along with two draft picks, were traded to Denver for Kiki Vandeweghe. My heart sunk. My dad thought it was so ridiculous for them to give up three players plus their draft picks for one guy. He was so right about that.



  The following year Natt averaged 23.3 ppg and 7.8 rpg with the Nuggets and made the all-star roster (his only appearance) He played 4+ seasons with Denver before being traded to San Antonio. His numbers did decline but to me he was one of those 'what if' players. What if he wasn't traded? What if he finished his career in Portland? That's what I had wished for. Even though he may have not been the main guy on the Blazers, he was a solid contributor for the team. He WAS the one that got away (or the one the Blazers gave away; however you want to perceive it)

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