Tag Archives: Rip City

Spencer Hawes A Portland Trail Blazer?

Spencer Hawes Blazers

HAWES

The Portland Trail Blazers will once again be contending for the championship next season. Yes, it’s true Rip City fans. The moment we have all been waiting for, the time when our team would make it to the elite of the Western Conference is there, and the greatest news is that the Blazers are here to stay. Although Rip City recorded a great 2013 – 2014 campaign and made it as far as the second round of the playoffs, it’s obvious that some adjustments are needed to take things to the next level. Smart offseason moves, trades and signings will help the team move forward, and the signing of Spencer Hawes could be one of those.

The 7 – footer versatile big man could provide a significant boost to the Blazers’ shooting ability from mid and long range. Hawes recorded his best season up to now in the league in 2013 – 2014 both in scoring and in shooting percentages. In 53 games with the Philadelphia 76ers he averaged 13.0 points and 45.1 per cent shooting from the field while after he got dealt with Cleveland, his numbers increased to 13.5 points per contest, 46.8 per cent from the floor and 44.8 per cent from three-point range.

Spencer Hawes

HAWES

It’s notable that Hawes could help the Blazers both in the shooting and in the rebounding category. Rip City has a solid starting five, but it certainly needs to add some depth and also some quality in its front line. With Mo Williams holding a player option this summer, the Blazers might have to turn their interest towards other options, especially if Williams decides to seek for another destination.
But even if Williams stays in Portland, the Blazers will have both the financial flexibility and the need to land a player like Hawes. Portland has around $57 million in its books for the upcoming season, and this means the team could throw a tempting offer on the table for Hawes. At the same time, Rip City will use its team option for Robin Lopez, unless a significant surprise happens.

Spencer H to the blazers

HAWES

Of course, there are several alternative options with which the Blazers could upgrade their frontcourt. Chris Kaman and Jordan Hill will be unrestricted free agents this summer, and they could have a big impact in Rip City’s chances to do better next season. Elton Brand, Emeka Okafor and Jermaine O’Neil could also be targeted but they don’t have the quality and the potential of a guy like Hawes or Kaman.

With the picture we saw from the Portland Trail Blazers during the 2013 – 2014 campaign, it became apparent that this team can achieve great things in the next season. The Blazers seem to be a few tweaks away from seriously contending for a championship. And although Spencer Hawes will not make Rip City the best team in the NBA, it is a move that makes sense for Terry Stotts’s group.

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Emerging powers in NBA’s Wild Wild West

Western Conference

NBA WEST

The Western Conference has been the more powerful of the two in the NBA for several years now. This current season is no exception. Apart from the powerhouses, which were expected to dominate and they eventually did, we also saw several underdogs making their presence felt. The San Antonio Spurs, the Los Angeles Clippers and the Oklahoma City Thunder are considered as the three elite teams in the West, but the Portland Trail Blazers and the Golden State Warriors are also powerhouses, emerging ones. We could even say that the Los Angeles Clippers are an emerging powerhouse, given that it’s been just a couple of seasons since Lob City has made it to the top. Let’s examine each emerging power in the West.

Golden State Warriors

GS Warriors Tickets

WARRIORS

The Warriors are definitely an emerging powerhouse. Although the Dubs experienced several ups and downs this season, they also showed their potential. The Warriors entered the 2013-2014 campaign as one of the strongest championship contenders in the Western Conference, and the truth is that it took them a while to showcase their abilities. Playing without their starting centre, Andrew Bogut, the Dubs did manage to drag their first-round series against the Los Angeles Clippers in seven games. They eventually fell to Lob City, but the future seems to be bright for Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, David Lee, Andre Iguodala and the rest of the crew. Every core member of the team is under contract for at least one more season.

Portland Trail Blazers

Blazers Tickets

BLAZERS

Rip City made it to the second round of the playoffs this year and but it also managed to made its presence felt across the NBA world. The Blazers have now found their new face of the franchise, in Damian Lillard. The second-year point guard as already reached a superstar level and although he is just 23, he seems to be ready to make it to the list of the elite point guards in the NBA, together with Chris Paul, Tony Parker and Russell Westbrook. On top of that, LaMarcus Aldridge has managed to revamp his career, and although he had some cold streaks during the playoffs, he seems to be capable of being the second-star pillar, alongside Lillard. Nicolas Batum is the third member of Rip City’s Big Three and things in Portland now look better than ever in the recent history of the team. Look for the Blazers to continue emerging in the seasons to come.

Los Angeles Clippers

LA Clippers Tickets

CLIPPERS

Forget about the Lakers. The next big thing in LA is the team called “Los Angeles Clippers”, also known as Lob City. The Clips possess every single element a true powerhouse; an elite team needs to have. They’ve got two megastars, Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, an emerging star, in DeAndre Jordan, the best sixth man in the NBA, in Jamal Crawford and also one of the handfuls of guru coaches in the league, Doc Rivers. The Clippers have already emerged as a powerhouse in the West, but they are continuing their upward course. If they don’t win the NBA Championship this year, they will certainly have the chance to do so in the seasons to come.

Rip City Is For Real

Damian Lillard Blazers

Damian Lillard

The 2013-2014 season has been a roller coaster ride for Rip City. After reaching the top of the tough Western Conference early in the season, the Portland Trail Blazers fell to the fifth spot and they also saw their chances to make it to the top reducing. The Blazers entered the first round of the 2014 NBA Playoffs as the underdogs in their matchups against the Houston Rockets but they managed to eliminate them after six games. Now, they are being dominated by the veteran group of the San Antonio Spurs and their playoff trip might soon reach its end.

However, despite the failure to top the San Antonio Spurs, a task that is of course very difficult for any team around the league, the Blazers’ course during the 2013-2014 campaign is anything but bad. In fact, even if Rip City exits the playoffs in the second round, the entire city should feel proud about this team. After everything, the Blazers have gone through and after all those top-player severe injuries, Portland has found a way to turn things around.

In addition, the future looks really bright for this team, given that it has now found the Big Three around which it can build. Damian Lillard showcased his leadership skills not just during the playoffs but even throughout the regular season. The versatile point guard has already reached a superstar level and he is just 23 years old. He and LaMarcus Aldridge are under contract for the next season, with the Blazers holding a team option, which will most probably exercise for the season after and also a qualifying offer for the 2015 – 2016 season. Nicolas Batum is also under contract till the end of the 2015 – 2016 season but what is even more important is the fact that something seems to be changing in Rip City.

The Blazers are finally starting to find their way to success and whilst they still haven’t formed an elite team, they are certainly on the right track. Portland has found its new franchise face, in Damian Lillard and also a truly capable star veteran, in LaMarcus Aldridge, who might just be the perfect fit alongside Lillard. Nicolas Batum is the third wheel of the Blazers’ engine and several analysts compare them to the San Antonio Spurs, stating that the Blazers are a younger version of San Antonio. I couldn’t agree more with this statement and I would go a step further, stating that Damian Lillard will soon have the same essence to Rip City like Kobe Bryant has to the Los Angeles Lakers. Yes, he is that good.

So, summing up, there is absolutely no reason for Blazers fans to feel disappointed with their favorite team this year. The Blazers did what they had to do. They went as far as they could. Now, the fun part begins, as the team will try to further improve during the postseason. We should all expect the Blazers to stay in the forefront of the NBA for the next seasons.