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So says John Canzano:

Canzano Column

IMO, the Blazers have demonstrated that they can be competetive on a nightly basis through their scrappiness. However, given the strength of the West, along with the Blazers' continued weakness at the 2G spot and the lack of a true backup for Zach Randolph at PF, I think that Nash would have to pull off a trade to resolve those deficiencies in order to see this team as a true competitor for a playoff spot.

The biggest surprise of this column for me, however, is the author.
 

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In some ways I think the Oregonian sports reporters are reading tea-leaves.

In the past few years, many have stated that while they were fans of the team, they weren't particularly happy with many of the players.

However, as with most things new, the Blazers right now are in a honeymoon period with reporters, the city, fans, etc.

We have a new coach, we have a generally likable group of young players, and, most importantly, suddenly we are playing in a manner in which fans will support the team, even in losing (to a degree).

The reporters read those tea-leaves and write what they a) can get away with and b) think is something that will resonate with readers.

Right now, with the honeymoon in full swing, that resonating sound is hugely optimistic. I will be curious to see the articles that come from these same reporters if the Blazers totally tank the upcoming road-trip.

Of course, if we do well, it only encourages the writers to write more-of-same. Of course, having the writers actually write positive things about the Blazers is nice.

Here's go a good road trip (and last home game tonight).

Gramps...
 

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But when you think about it the West is not that strong. The southwest division is, with San Antonio, Houston, Dallas all probable playoff teams and Memphis possible. But the rest? The Clippers are in bleeping first place in the Pacific, for heaven's sake! The Suns are depleted, the Kings have, at least early on, stunk and the Warriors, while improved, have plenty of holes of their own. The Lakers are the Kobe Bryant show, which is exactly what he wants but is not a winning formula. In the Northwest the Sonics are worse, the Nuggets and Timberwolves shaky. So there are really only 3 teams that I can say barring disasters will be in the postseason, plus the 2 other division winners. There will be some .500 or so teams in the playoffs in the West. Not likely to advance, but there.
 

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e_blazer1 said:
So says John Canzano:

Canzano Column

IMO, the Blazers have demonstrated that they can be competetive on a nightly basis through their scrappiness. However, given the strength of the West, along with the Blazers' continued weakness at the 2G spot and the lack of a true backup for Zach Randolph at PF, I think that Nash would have to pull off a trade to resolve those deficiencies in order to see this team as a true competitor for a playoff spot.

The biggest surprise of this column for me, however, is the author.
Not much of a surprise. Canzano hasn't turned over some new leaf. He just knows when not to be a bully to the popular "new kid" (ie the scrappy McMillian led young Blazers).

Read the column. It is not a compliment. It assumes the good the team has been doing as if it were the dirt beneath your feet. A solid foundation that will always be there. Money in the bank. That is just baloney.

This column is a set up. The punch will come later. In Canzano world the Blazers can never do the right thing. Since the Blazer themselves admin this is an unbalanced roster that won't be fixed for another full year; since the Blazers themselves proclaimed this a rebuilding year with little chance for the playoffs; they are hard to attack on their own goals.

Canzano is unilaterally raising the bar for this team so high, they have no shot at making it.

Then he gets to be Canzano again.

John - stick. it. where. it. will. do. you. some. good.
 

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Storyteller said:
Yes, you are. Please look at who the Blazers have beaten and where. Maybe that will give you some perspective
I think what's extremely interesting is not just the Win/Loss aspect but how competitive the team has been. Aside fromt he debacle in Denver, and let's be honest Nate threw in the towel real early in that one.

@ Minnesota 4 point game
@ Denver (oops fluke I'm assuming)
Atlanta 1 point game (both teams played well)
New York 12 point game
Detroit 3 point game
Chicago 3 point game

One thing that to me is interesting (outside Denver) is this team stays in the game till the end, but they really need to get better at putting teams away in the 2nd half. That to me is the real mark of a young team. They hang around but when they are up 7 to start the 4th they struggle to hold that.

2 things that are a huge difference...Free throw and 3 point shooting.

Bulls Game
Bulls
FT 0 missed
3Pt 6 made

Blazers
FT 11 missed
3pt 2 made

Thats a difference of 23 points in the Bulls favor.
 

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ANother close game

Pistons
5 FT's missed
7 3p's made

Blazers
7 ft's missed
1 3pter made

Difference 20 points in favor of the Pistons
 

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I really want to see what this team can do out on this upcoming road trip. It is nice to see them winning, but what happens when they are on the road will decide if they can make the playoffs. I really don't see them making the playoffs, but it is nice to see that Nate has them in games down to the wire. This team is much further along than I thought they would have been at this point in the season.


Maybe they will suprise us, but you have to win out on the road and that is going to be a hard thing to do when your winning games at home that go down to the wire. Guess we'll find out soon enough.
 

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HOWIE said:
I really want to see what this team can do out on this upcoming road trip. It is nice to see them winning, but what happens when they are on the road will decide if they can make the playoffs. I really don't see them making the playoffs, but it is nice to see that Nate has them in games down to the wire. This team is much further along than I thought they would have been at this point in the season.


Maybe they will suprise us, but you have to win out on the road and that is going to be a hard thing to do when your winning games at home that go down to the wire. Guess we'll find out soon enough.
I am really settling in that my only real expectation for this team is that they just play hard in each given game. So far I haven't been dissappointed, I mean even the Nuggets game they played with decent effort , but the shots simply weren't falling.
 

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Schilly said:
I think what's extremely interesting is not just the Win/Loss aspect but how competitive the team has been. Aside fromt he debacle in Denver, and let's be honest Nate threw in the towel real early in that one.

@ Minnesota 4 point game
@ Denver (oops fluke I'm assuming)
Atlanta 1 point game (both teams played well)
New York 12 point game
Detroit 3 point game
Chicago 3 point game

One thing that to me is interesting (outside Denver) is this team stays in the game till the end, but they really need to get better at putting teams away in the 2nd half. That to me is the real mark of a young team. They hang around but when they are up 7 to start the 4th they struggle to hold that.2 things that are a huge difference...Free throw and 3 point shooting.

Bulls Game
Bulls
FT 0 missed
3Pt 6 made

Blazers
FT 11 missed
3pt 2 made

Thats a difference of 23 points in the Bulls favor.
Good points Schil..I find it interesting that in the last 2 games (both close 1win, 1 loss) Zach and Darius have been nonexistant in the 4th qt. No points for Darius in either game and only 2 points for Zach. Those guys need to be the team leaders they want to be and step up their games in the 4th quarter for us to win the close games we are going to need to win to have any kind of respectable record.
 

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I think one key problem is the second half - the Blazers either gave leads away or fell behind against Minnesota, Detroit and Chicago. Granted, they put NY away in the 3rd, but it seems like the team just doesn't come out of the gates with extra energy in the second half consistently.

Then again, consistency will be the name of the game with such a young team throughout the season.
 

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All those stats I posted above....Basically means this....

Portland is one 3 pointer made per game and one additional Freethrow made per game away from being 5-1.

Free throw shooting is killing us right now. Three point shooting IMO they simply need to be a little less tenative about taking the open shot.
 

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sa1177 said:
Good points Schil..I find it interesting that in the last 2 games (both close 1win, 1 loss) Zach and Darius have been nonexistant in the 4th qt. No points for Darius in either game and only 2 points for Zach. Those guys need to be the team leaders they want to be and step up their games in the 4th quarter for us to win the close games we are going to need to win to have any kind of respectable record.
Great call on the Zach and Darius thing...What's really odd about that, is in the 4th quarter, the offense slows down and is designed to work to get the ball to Zach in the post, essentially through Darius. It isn't being terribly effective, and as a result time is wasted and shots end up being forced mostly by Zach and often by someone else, simply cause the shot needs to be taken.
 

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Schilly said:
Great call on the Zach and Darius thing...What's really odd about that, is in the 4th quarter, the offense slows down and is designed to work to get the ball to Zach in the post, essentially through Darius. It isn't being terribly effective, and as a result time is wasted and shots end up being forced mostly by Zach and often by someone else, simply cause the shot needs to be taken.
Agreed...other teams just double team Zach and front the post, thus forcing him to take a bad shot or forcing Darius to take a outside shot. Neither is effective as you noted.
 

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Schilly said:
I think what's extremely interesting is not just the Win/Loss aspect but how competitive the team has been. Aside fromt he debacle in Denver, and let's be honest Nate threw in the towel real early in that one.

@ Minnesota 4 point game
@ Denver (oops fluke I'm assuming)
Atlanta 1 point game (both teams played well)
New York 12 point game
Detroit 3 point game
Chicago 3 point game

One thing that to me is interesting (outside Denver) is this team stays in the game till the end, but they really need to get better at putting teams away in the 2nd half. That to me is the real mark of a young team. They hang around but when they are up 7 to start the 4th they struggle to hold that.

2 things that are a huge difference...Free throw and 3 point shooting.

Bulls Game
Bulls
FT 0 missed
3Pt 6 made

Blazers
FT 11 missed
3pt 2 made

Thats a difference of 23 points in the Bulls favor.
Good post.

I keep coming back to last year's Bulls team. They were a lot like us. They were a very young team, without an abundance of established talent. They started off bad...zero wins in their first 9 games and just two wins in their first 15 games. Ouch. Then, they started to learn how to win games, mostly thanks to their fiery coach who was finally instilling a killer instinct in them. By mid January, they were at .500. By the end of the season, they were 12 games over .500 and in the playoffs.

I don't think the West is as loaded as people think anymore. There are some teams we can beat. We actually might have a little MORE talent than the Bulls had last year, they were playing a TON of young guys. We've got Miles and Randolph, who are probably more established in the league than any of last year's Bulls were.

The fact that we already have as many wins as the Bulls had after 17 games last year says to me, this team actually CAN make the playoffs. If we do...Nate McMillan is the coach of the year hands down.
 

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HOWIE said:
I really want to see what this team can do out on this upcoming road trip. It is nice to see them winning, but what happens when they are on the road will decide if they can make the playoffs. I really don't see them making the playoffs, but it is nice to see that Nate has them in games down to the wire. This team is much further along than I thought they would have been at this point in the season.


Maybe they will suprise us, but you have to win out on the road and that is going to be a hard thing to do when your winning games at home that go down to the wire. Guess we'll find out soon enough.
I'm with you Howie. There aren't many road trips in November that mean much, but if this one is successfull it could really boost the confidence of this young team. I'm really encouraged by what I've seen so far in terms of hustle and effort. If there's one thing that bothers me it's FT shooting. You just CAN NOT shoot 60% from the stripe and continue to win close games. If hustle and grit are our identity, then you have to be able to "steal" a few points. In other words, if we don't have as much offensive talent as other teams, we could benefit by being aggressive and getting to the foul line. We have guys who can get there. We just have to start making them!! Maybe I'm nitpicking. This team wasn't supposed to be .500 right now . . . maybe I should feel lucky. It's just that FT's are such an easy part of the game. Most of us who post on this board could make 80/100!! Maybe not in front of 30,000 people, but still . . . they gotta do better than 60%!! Does anybody else feel that with guys like Miles and Rube that it's more of a lack of concentration than anything else? Hey, Joel P is never going to shoot 80%, but some of the other guys can do better. Ruben just looks tense and misserable at the stripe. His stroke, other than being flat, isn't that bad. Miles kind of leans back and pulls away on his follow through (rather than following through towards the basket) Both of these guys should be 70% foul shooters. We certainly could "steal" a few more games if they were.
 

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I said this elsewhere, but I'll repeat it here where it belongs.

I generally boycott Canzano, but a post in this thread billed today's drivel as even-handed, so I clicked the link. This quote from Jonnie ticked me off a little:

Can'tZano said:
If Blazers stay healthy and scrap, the only way they don't make the postseason is if they allow their youth to be an excuse.
It strikes me that this one-liner clearly shows his real agenda in overstating the Blazers playoff chances this early in this developmental season. It's the perfect setup for the inevitable negative articles he's itching to write later this season if/when we don't make the playoffs.

Thanks, Can'tZanoMan. Way to hedge your bets, you ruddy *******.

There, I feel better.

Go Blazers. :rock:
 

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His whole show today was about how great the Blazers are playing and how he thinks that were going to be a playoff team....

So basically he's setting us up for failure....slowly but surely...
 

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zagsfan20 said:
His whole show today was about how great the Blazers are playing and how he thinks that were going to be a playoff team....

So basically he's setting us up for failure....slowly but surely...
he's so obviously planting a seed, it's not even funny.

Seriously, how can ANYONE who works for KFXX, or the Oregonian, justfiy his employment with either company? The guy is a serious idiot, who's a 2nd rate writer, and trying to just milk fans for what he can.

Would bringing a sign to the game tonite that says "Canzano, you're an idiot" be to harsh?
 

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Hap said:
he's so obviously planting a seed, it's not even funny.

Seriously, how can ANYONE who works for KFXX, or the Oregonian, justfiy his employment with either company? The guy is a serious idiot, who's a 2nd rate writer, and trying to just milk fans for what he can.

Would bringing a sign to the game tonite that says "Canzano, you're an idiot" be to harsh?
No, it wouldn't be too harsh, but he's talking good about the Blazers right now so I don't think a lot of people will understand the statement.....

KFXX has a disclaimer before his show that basically says that his opinion is not representative of KFXX the station or its sponsors, which I find funny as hell....
 
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