Here is an excerpt from Mike Kahn's Ten Things We Learned in the NBA this Week.
I think Ruben has dug himself into a hole so deep he will never get out of it in Blazer Fans eyes. Thought we were going to have a season with no problems but this makes Ruben even more hated.9. The irony in sports never ceases to amaze. It was just four years ago that Nate McMillan, then coach of the Seattle SuperSonics, was beside himself when management refused to re-sign Ruben Patterson because they didn't like his general character and behavior. Insiders believe the lack of input for personnel began there for McMillan and ultimately led him to leave for Portland last summer, the team that signed Patterson that fateful summer.
What this really means: Well, eight games into their reunion, McMillan and Patterson's relationship is falling to pieces. Following the first game of a seven-game road trip East, Patterson was sent home and placed on the inactive list following an expletive-laced tirade at McMillan for lack of playing time. No one was deeper in Patterson's corner than McMillan, but on an extraordinarily young team, that kind of behavior from the 30-year-old Patterson is intolerable.
Also in a dab of irony, it badly marred a breakout game for young point guard Sebastian Telfair in a trip home and against his cousin Stephon Marbury. Telfair had 27 points, seven assists, six rebounds and three steals in the 103-92 loss, but it was a landmark game for both reasons. The way-too-young Blazers started the season a surprising 3-3 because McMillan has them playing so hard. But commitment can be fleeting, and it was imperative management supported him with Patterson, unlike the pathetic mishandling of a Darius Miles tirade a year ago that undermined and ultimately ended the tenure of coach Maurice Cheeks. This is a step in the right direction and might even accelerate a deal for Patterson to head east where a lot of teams are interested in his toughness and defense.