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Sigh. Here we are in an interesting situation I have to admit. I have only rooted for the Blazers to lose ONE game in my entire life. I'll admit it. It was in the mid 90s and the team was in decline and I was a bit bummed. I went to the game and *gasp* made a bet with a fan next to me that the Dallas Mavericks (Jason, Jimmy, and Jamal) would beat us. I lost. It was, without question, my low point as a Blazer fan. I swear to you that I've never rooted against the Blazers at any other time. That was a one game anomaly.

But now.... I may be tempted to join the dark side once again. But this time, it's not because I'm frustrated and out to make a buck. This time, it's because it may be what's best for the team! Ouch! Did I just type that? I've always been against the line of thinking that the Blazers needed to tank a season and get a good lottery pick in order to once again become a contender. I've always maintained that losing is a disease. I've pointed to the Clippers and the Warriors as examples of teams who have had years of top draft picks and no playoff run to show for it. I've always said that the best way to build a championship team is through free agency and trades as both the Los Angeles Lakers and Detroit Pistons have done in recent years.

That said, I can't help but look at the standings and start to wonder... hmmmm.... we're the 5th worst team in the league right now.... we are absolutely mathematically out of the playoffs with several weeks to go..... hmmm.... this is a position we've never been in before..... not since the inception of the lottery.... so what does this mean, again?.... the Bobcats aren't allowed to get a top 3 pick, so we are now in the 4th best position to get the #1 pick..... Since the Bobcats are guaranteed the #4 pick of the draft, we are currently in a position in which we would end up with either the 1st-3rd pick or the 5th, 6th, 7th, or 8th pick (if, by some freak chance, three of the teams with better records than US ended up winning the top three picks)...... HOWEVER, if we can slip below the Utah Jazz in the standings, we would move into the 3rd best position to get the #1 pick and could wind up with no worse than the 7th pick...... but wait, wait, wait..... is there really much of a difference between the 7th pick and the 8th pick?.... and doesn't history tell us that we can bomb in the draft no matter what pick we get?..... after all, there is a Joe Smith and a Kwame Brown for every Tim Duncan and LeBron James, no?...... yeah, yeah, yeah.... but if the playoffs are already out of question, don't we owe to ourselves the best CHANCE to get the best player available in the draft? and don't we accomplish this by slipping below the Utah Jazz in the standings?........ I can't root for the Utah Jazz! I mean, I have rooted for the Utah Jazz in the past, sure, but that was when they played the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1998 NBA playoffs (how sweep it was!)..... On the other hand.... isn't it management's strategy to, dare I say, "tank" the season? I mean..... come on now.... the firing of Cheeks was HARDLY about wins and losses... we're something like 2-15 since he left!

Okay, I'm rambling. Do I dare root for the Utah Jazz to beat my beloved Portland Trail Blazers? Is it really rooting against the Blazers? Wouldn't I be rooting for them to WIN a better draft pick?

This is funny to me since I was the one who attacked JackieJackal for saying that she hoped the Utah Jazz would finish with a better record than the Blazers. But now.... maybe she was on to something. Do I agree with her?

Go Blazers? or Go Jazz?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I hear ya, cran. I think the thing is... I'm just so competitive and when we have any shot at winning the title, I want to compete for that, but when we're in contention for the next Michael Jordan or Tim Duncan..... I'm inclined to compete for that. That said... I think there is something to be said about the pride of winning an individual contest. THAT said, I don't think that this current group has been coached to give a damn about such pride and if they don't care, why should I? It's a tough call.
 

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I'm never of the opinion that tanking is a good idea. The attitude inculcated into players should always be one of being as competitive as possible to the bitter end. You never want players calculating when it's time to stop expending effort or when a cause is lost. Many inspiring single-game comebacks or seasonal turnarounds might be lost to such an attitude.

However, I'd be perfectly happy to have the Blazers play to win and end up losing. Not because they didn't care or were in tank mode. But I'd also be happy with a win by the Blazers; never hurts to have young players experience the taste of success.

So, I'd say there's a positive to either outcome. If you feel bad about rooting for the Blazers to lose, then root for them to win. There's benefit to them winning.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Minstrel said:
I'm never of the opinion that tanking is a good idea. The attitude inculcated into players should always be one of being as competitive as possible to the bitter end. You never want players calculating when it's time to stop expending effort or when a cause is lost. Many inspiring single-game comebacks or seasonal turnarounds might be lost to such an attitude.

However, I'd be perfectly happy to have the Blazers play to win and end up losing. Not because they didn't care or were in tank mode. But I'd also be happy with a win by the Blazers; never hurts to have young players experience the taste of success.

So, I'd say there's a positive to either outcome. If you feel bad about rooting for the Blazers to lose, then root for them to win. There's benefit to them winning.
I agree with your line of thinking 100% Minstrel, but I'm not sure the organization does. After all, why was Mo Cheeks fired? Was the goal of winning scrapped before we were out of the playoff race? And why on earth is Sebastian Telfair starting?
 

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I really would like to see a loss. with only 10 games left 4 of which are against Utah and Golden State, each game has an enorpmous impact on the draft for Portland.

A loss tomorrow could mean a higher pick which could mean a better player to help us in the future.

I'm torn, but We haven't had many high picks over the years if we're gonn have one might as well have the higheest possible.
 

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NathanLane said:
I agree with your line of thinking 100% Minstrel, but I'm not sure the organization does. After all, why was Mo Cheeks fired? Was the goal of winning scrapped before we were out of the playoff race? And why on earth is Sebastian Telfair starting?
Two different issues here, Speed.

The Blazers - as players - should play as hard as they can, every minute they're on the floor. Because when they stop working as hard as they can, they stop learning, they stop improving, and they start regressing. That goes along with not tanking.

As for firing Maurice Cheeks - he was not a very good coach. He was an OK coach to begin with, but he'd lost the team, and that made him worse than below average. He had to go. Now, the Blazers need to show that they made the right choice (as whether to take extraordinary efforts to prop a mediocre coach or to send him packing) by finding the right long-term replacement. By dropping Mo, it's true the Blazers all but gave up on a playoff berth for this season, but that's because the longer term goal, of winning a championship, was not being furthered by allowing Mo to continue to coach a team that wasn't listening to him.

As for starting Sebastian Telfar - the kid is the future, and since the Blazers aren't going to make the playoffs now, it's best to groom him for the future.

But am I rooting for the Utah Jazz? I'd sooner ask John Stockton to jab me repeatedly in the eye.
 

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Here's what I'd hope for.

A Blazers win, and then I'd hope that the Jazz end up winning enough games against other opponents for them to move ahead of the Blazers in the lottery anyway!

I just can't bring my self to root for losses... I just can't. This is the first year I've really had to consider it, but I haven't been able to do it. Now, when they lose, it doesn't hurt me as much as it did in the past, but I still enjoy a win more then a loss.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
HearToTemptYou said:
Here's what I'd hope for.

A Blazers win, and then I'd hope that the Jazz end up winning enough games against other opponents for them to move ahead of the Blazers in the lottery anyway!

I just can't bring my self to root for losses... I just can't. This is the first year I've really had to consider it, but I haven't been able to do it. Now, when they lose, it doesn't hurt me as much as it did in the past, but I still enjoy a win more then a loss.
Hear- read your post carefully. You're still basically hoping that the Blazers lose games, just not this particular one to the Utah Jazz. Cuz the Jazz can't pass us (as you hope) unless we lose games, whether it be to the Jazz or other opponents.

It's a tricky situation, isn't it?. And you're right- we've never been in the position of having to consider this dilemma. What do Clipper fans do?
 

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It's late, but I'll go ahead and put in my 2 cents on this -- even at the risk of rambling.

As a fan I want the players to do their best, to hustle, to give it all they've got, to never give up. I can root for a team that doesn't win many games, so long as they aren't losers in this regard (i.e. effort and attitude). I think that's what most fans want.

I've followed the Blazers from their first season. I think most current Blazers fans are incredibly spoiled, many to the point of becoming fair weather fans or at least demanding instant gratification. Life rarely works like that.

I remember when the Blazers and the 76ers were in the race for the worst record in the league. I supported them then, and I'll support them now so long as they put players on the floor that do their best every game.

It's OK for the fans to root for a high lottery pick. We want to have the best team possible, and a good pick, if judiciously executed and with a bit of luck, may help that in the long run. But it is absolutely never acceptible for the players to have that attitude. As others have said, you don't want them to learn to accept losing, or to ever believe they can't pull out the win, no matter what the score. Even if a player thinks a loss is inevitible, a true competitor will still not stop competing. Those are the kinds of players I want to watch.

But I believe this thread is about the fans, not the players. So, I guess I won't mind if they win, and I won't mind if they lose. But a top 3 pick sure would be nice.

OK, so I'm leaning toward the draft pick, so sue me. :)
 

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NathanLane said:
Hear- read your post carefully. You're still basically hoping that the Blazers lose games, just not this particular one to the Utah Jazz. Cuz the Jazz can't pass us (as you hope) unless we lose games, whether it be to the Jazz or other opponents.
This is true, but no matter how hard I try, I just can't root for the Jazz! I'm sure you understand why! Sorta the same reason I can't really root for the Lakers... Heh heh heh...

I'm always hoping for Blazer wins, but at this point, I understand in the back of my mind that if they can't pull out the victory it's not all bad because they end up betting their draft positioning. So maybe in a way... it's a (pardon the pun) "win-win" situation? I really don't know.

I suppose in this situation I'd be happy if the Blazers at least put them selfs in a position to win the remaining games, even if they don't pull them out. To me, that is better then losing games by 15+ points because it would build more confidence in the young guys, knowing they can hang tough.

It's a tricky situation, isn't it?. And you're right- we've never been in the position of having to consider this dilemma. What do Clipper fans do?
Clipper fans probably just end up rooting for the Lakers. Heh heh heh...

Like I said above, the approach I'm taking is que sara sara (What will be, will be.) If the Blazers win, they win! It's always good for the young guys to get victories. If the Blazers lose, they still end up winning in a way, as it ends up helping their draft position come June.

The bottom line is that I'll be happy with either case if it ends up helping the Blazers more so in the long run.

I hope this post made sense to everyone! heh heh heh...
 

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Here's a situation that may be relivant... slightly off the topic, but I think it's worth mentioning.

As my Avatar suggests, I'm a Browns fan. As such, I ended up facing the same scenario at the end of the NFL season as we are facing with the Blazers nearing the end of the NBA season. At the time, the Browns had lost 9 games in a row. That's going 2 and a half months with out winning a game. By the end of the season, they were bad. Really bad. They made this Blazer team look pretty good.

Well, it came down to the final game of the season. The Browns were 3-12 going into the game against the Texans. With the Dolphins having defeated the Browns in the previous week (and passing them record wise at the time), it basically meant if the Browns won, they would get the 3rd overall pick in the draft, but if they lost, they would get the #2 pick in each round of the draft.

Part of me was rooting for that high draft pick... but after you go over 2 months with out a win, it's hard to not hope for a victory even if it does mean hurting the draft position.

Long story short, the Browns did end up winning the game, and they now have the 3rd pick in the 1st, 3rd, 5th, and 7th rounds of the draft instead of the 2nd pick in every round.* Do I wish they had the 2nd pick? Of course. The big question here is would I trade in that win at the end of the season for that 2nd pick? At this point, I would, but if you had asked me the same question before the game had started, I would have given you the opposite answer.

I suppose the moral of my ramblings here is that in the long run, it's probably best that the Blazers lose games, but it doesn't seem to feel like it while they are still playing.


*They have the 2nd pick in the 2nd, 4th and 6th rounds since they tied record wise with Miami.
 

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For the remaining games this year, the main goal is that our young guys get some experience and show some improvement. Outside of that I'm rooting for the best draft pick. So I guess I'm still rooting for the Blazers in one area, but rooting against them in another area.

I don't believe the Blazers will be contenders next year, but I also don't think they will be in this same situation for years to come. So I'd like to see us get the best draft pick as possible this year. If that means losing to the Jazz, I'm fine with that.
 

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The Bobcats can't get a top 3 pick this year? I thought that was just in their first year. Are we sure about that?
 

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If the team plays its veterans, I am all for it losing. The veterans (esp. Damon, DA, etc.) are the past and not the future, and I don't want our draft position to

If Portland played Bassie, Khryapa, Outlaw, and Pryz very heavy minutes, then I want to see them doing well. Even if it means winning the game. :)

But of course, if the rookies and sophmores play the whole game, it probably means a loss....

Either way, the Blazers are playing for the future.
 

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I just re-read this thread and realized that I didn't properly respond to the thread question.

Will I be "rooting for the Utah Jazz to beat us?" Absotively, posilutely, NO! Not very insightful, I just wanted to make that clear.

I'll be rooting for the Blazers players to play up to and possibly exceed their abilities. To grow as players and teammates. To entertain and entice me with glimpses of the improvements we can expect next year. If they still lose, it will be the 'win-win' HearToTemptYou spoke of. If they win, that's ok too.
 

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How about this....

I'll be rooting for the Blazers to play hard and play well, but that's doesn't meen I wan them to win, coming up just short like they did in Seattle and against Denver would be just fine in my book.
 
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