I know their record is only 6-4, but a 3-1 road trip and a gut-it-out win against lowly Minnesota, where the Blazers only had their C game and still found a way to get it done, is heartening to Blazer fans everywhere.
Quite a few talking heads (writing heads?) said that if they could end up 5-5 after the first ten games, that would be a great moral victory, considering the tough schedule for those first ten games: @ Lakers, San Antonio, @ Utah, Houston, Minnesota, @ Orlando, @ Miami, @ New Orleans, and @ Minnesota. Well how does 6-4 taste? Three home wins, three quality road wins. Losses only to LAL, UTA, NO, and SA… all quality, playoff teams (and they hung tough against New Orleans, nearly shutting down Chris Paul).
This is not a sports blog, so I’m not going to dish on and on about the slow emergence of gentle giant Greg Oden (left for dead by many after his early re-injury), the flashy duo of Spaniards in Sergio Rodriguez and Rudy Fernandez (probably a leader in early rookie-of-the-year talk), the maddening inconsistency of Travis Outlaw, the mystery of MIA guard Martell Webster (the three-point maven of this masthead… when will he return?) and crowd favorite Channing Frye (who, I’m sorry to say, I thought was a White guy until we traded for him… something about his name just sounded too suburban… I’m just being honest here) and the undeniable clutchness of team leader Brandon Roy. (Still think your guy was better, Minnesota fan? It’s okay… I used to think Clyde Drexler was better than Michael Jordan. Fandom can be hard sometimes.)
Instead, I’ll let it suffice that ten games in, these Blazers have rightfully lived up to the hype, and I’ll be shocked — SHOCKED — if they don’t end up as a dangerous lower seed in the playoffs, the team nobody in the Western conference wants to face in the first round.
That is all. Back to more serious topics.