Jed Duffield

Jun 03

Love Goggles: Why we just can't let Batum go...

By Jed Duffield

One issue that the Portland Trail Blazers have always struggled with was letting players go either when they didn't fit with the team, production dropped, or were never really NBA caliber players to start with.  Portland, as a city, loves their players(aside from the end of the "jailblazer" era) and unfortunately overlooked some things that are obvious to those on the outside looking in.  When is it time to say goodbye?
In reality we should never have signed Batum.  He's a great player but we all know that he is what he is and the window for growth really was closing. I believe he peaked with what he showed us prior to the signing.  Hes a great blocker, side three gunner, with a knack for baseline dunks. The real issue for Nicolas Batum is that he is not consistent and has been a bit more fragile each season.  He's not an every night player.  If he goes big one night don't look for it to happen the next.  For a starter this does not work.
He is a great 6th man player and would be great on any team coming off the bench.  Unfortunately we overcommitted to him and paid him the starters wage.  Now he needs to start.  He is emotional and that kind of change here in Portland would be the end.  We should have traded him or let him sign elsewhere.  But what if the San Antonio Spurs or the Minnesota Timberwolves got him?  
Would it really have hurt us?  Spurs are in the playoffs which we didn't make. And the Timberwolves are.... the Timberwolves.  We need to start seeing the writing on the wall while its being written.  Not after the novel of our failure finished being etched into sed wall.
This off season the Blazers need to take a good hard look at who fits skill wise, and direction wise and make the tough calls.  We have no where but up to go.  Lets start this year.  Rip City Rise!


By Jed Duffield, 
Blazer Fan & Editor at #GetSome Elite Gaming


5 Comments

  1. One solid Big Man in the middle and Batums game will change dramatically.

    by commontongue on 6/4/2013 10:10 AM
  2. Do you see him contributing as a starter still on a everyday player with the added Big Man? Its tough man. He has so much natural ability but the disappearing in games really hurts our season.

    by Jed Duffield on 6/4/2013 11:46 AM
  3. BOOM SHAKALAKA!

    by Will Coca on 6/4/2013 2:08 PM
  4. Love Batum and everything he does! He is awesome to watch, and I think he will just get better.

    by jewelsmom on 6/7/2013 6:59 PM
  5. Nicolas is certainly not the weak link in the starting lineup. as a matter of fact, his overall game improved over the previous season and his career as a whole. here's a great note to support that. last season, Nicolas' scoring average increased by nearly a half a point over the previous season (that, with a bum wrist which his coach never allowed him to heal); his rebounding improved by a board a game; and he more than tripled his assist per game output. as a matter of fact, Nicolas had 360 assists last year compared to 325 in his first four seasons combined.

    i'm all for consistency and it bugs me when players don't bring it. however, if inconsistency is something you want to dispose of, Wesley is a much more likely candidate to be traded. he's much more inconsistent than Nicolas.

    by Kassandra on 6/23/2013 11:40 AM
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