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October 8, 2014 Updates
October 7, 2014 Updates

Leonard is part of a three-way October battle for a rotation spot in the frontcourt, so his play during the exhibition season — which starts tonight with a 6 p.m. matchup at the Utah Jazz — will be important. It's far too early to tell how much — if at all — Leonard will play this season. It's too early to say whether he'll earn a rotation spot. But when he does see the floor, if he does carve out a role, it likely will be one you didn't envision when he was drafted. "I feel like I'm more of a hybrid — I feel like I could grow into playing both (power forward and center)," Leonard said. "Right now, I feel more comfortable picking and popping and spacing the floor. And, certainly, I think that spacing the floor fits with the way the game is changing. That's the direction the game is going and, at least on the offensive end, I feel like I'm kind of molding into what the game is changing into." Oregonian

October 6, 2014 Updates
October 5, 2014 Updates

Batum has played for France every summer since 2009, but this year there was a difference. "This was my first time since I got drafted I had a team for me. I had a challenge ahead of me," he said. He had San Antonio's Boris Diaw, who helped knock out the Blazers, but the keys to the team were turned over to Batum. "I was the leader. Coach really gave me the team for the World Cup. That was big for me. I learned a lot," Batum said. "The first seven games I was Nic Batum, run around, play the team game." Columbian

He wants to get on the line more than he did, which can only help the Blazers. "That's one aspect of my game I want to improve more this year," Batum said. "Being on the line more, being more aggressive. Last year Wes (Matthews), LA (LaMarcus Aldridge) and Dame (Damian Lillard) were the scorers." Columbian

October 4, 2014 Updates

Head coach Terry Stotts, meanwhile, was quick to point to the differing-yet-valuable intangibles each bring to Portland's tight-knit roster. "Steve is a consummate professional," Stotts said of Blake. "He's one of the hardest playing guys that I've been around and leads by example. He's very competitive." In Kaman, Stotts noted the value the veteran big man offers to Portland's younger centers, particularly in using size and spacing on the floor. "What he offers Joel (Freeland) and Meyers (Leonard) is some mentorship, as well as veteran knowhow." Oregonian

October 3, 2014 Updates

Portland Trail Blazers guard Wesley Matthews missed practice for the second straight morning on Thursday in Tualatin. “I had that heart thing go on again yesterday. I noticed it probably two thirds of the way through practice. I felt it go irregular,” said Matthews on Thursday. “I talked Dr. Jeff, sat out a little bit ran some tests. Went in today to do the shock that I did last year and I felt it last night I felt it go back to normal. It stayed, it corrected itself. It stayed normal through this morning. I was in there early this morning and all the scans and test, I was a lab rat again. Everything’s cool. Ease back into it. I’m optimistic, excited to get back out there.” The Columbian

Portland Trail Blazers guard Will Barton has launched a new personal website called willthethrill.com. Although the Blazers guard has become known in Portland as “The People’s Champ,” he’s been known as “The Thrill” since he started playing basketball as a child. But someone owned the website and Barton had to buy the rights to it, for “about $1200.” Barton says he doesn’t know who owned it, but he doesn’t seem to care much. “I don’t know,” Barton said when he was asked who owned it. “He didn’t need it, I need it. It’s my name.” The Columbian

October 2, 2014 Updates

Matthews had a similar issue last training camp with his heart. Although he promises to come back soon and even as soon as tomorrow, Terry Stotts is taking a “wait-and-see” approach. “We were hoping that it wasn’t too much and that’s what it turned out to be. That might be a little optimistic but basically that’s the Doctor’s decision,” Stotts said on whether Matthews would practice Friday. “I’m involved, stay engaged with the team. Similar to what I did last year. It’s almost like a good sign, I had a career year last year. It’s like it’s supposed to happen,” Matthews said. The Columbian

Matthews also says that he and his doctor’s aren’t sure why the irregular heartbeat returned but reiterated that it is “nothing threatening.” Wes was encouraged that the issue corrected itself and did not require the electrical corrective procedure he did last training camp. The Columbian

The Austin Toros today announced that Earl Watson and Jason Fraser have been hired as assistant coaches. Watson and Fraser join current head coach Ken McDonald and assistant coach Mike Miller on the Toros bench. “I'm thrilled with the addition of Earl and Jason to our staff,” said head coach Ken McDonald. “Both have valuable basketball backgrounds and will bring depth and experience to our group.” NBA.com

"Terry seems real even-keeled, level headed,'' Kaman said. "He jokes a little bit, is serious a little bit. I like him so far. But it always starts off that you like a guy, but by the end of the year you can end up hating him. You just never know. Hopefully, I don't hate Terry.'' Oregonian

Today, my skepticism has evolved into hope. At Monday's media day, Kaman proclaimed himself changed. "My ego,'' he said, "is gone.' Oregonian

THE TOP 50 PLAYERS IN TRAIL BLAZERS HISTORY

Only four Hall of Famers, but plenty of fantastic names in the Top 50 of the storied franchise.

   

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