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October 14, 2014 Updates

For the second straight season, Matthews dealt with an irregular heartbeat and dealt with it only the way he could, suggesting that maybe another career-year was in order. When he was asked about whether he thought this could be his last season in a Blazers uniform with his contract coming off the books this summer, he was to the point. "Nope." Columbian

While Portland's shooting guard isn't focused on winning NBA honors like being selected to the All-Defensive team, he's certainly not bashful about his place in the league. "I'm never going to be the type that gets gaudy numbers to make an All-Defensive team," said Matthews before getting to his case. "Do I think I'm All-Defense? Absolutely. I think I'm the best two-way two-guard in the NBA. But I feel like we need to be a good defensive team within the scheme of the game. We're not out there gambling, trying to reach and get steals. That would put us in a bind if I don't get it," Matthews said. Columbian

October 13, 2014 Updates

McCollum's senior year at Lehigh ended when he suffered a Jones fracture, which is a broken bone at the base of the small toe. McCollum had surgery, placing a screw in his foot. Then, in training camp with the Blazers last year, McCollum re-broke the foot at the start of training camp. This time, McCollum opted for a non-surgical ultrasound procedure. "There are methods you can do besides getting surgery, but it's his first break, so I'm sure they'll probably recommend surgery," McCollum said. "Either way, it's a tough injury to recover from, depending on if it's broken through all the way, the placement of the screw. There's a lot of things that go into it, but if they say four to six (weeks), it's probably more like eight to 10." Oregonian

Mike Tokito: LaMarcus Aldridge joked that he's glad "Shaqtin a fool" isn't on yet, because his stepping in before inbounding ball would've been on it. Twitter @mtokito

October 12, 2014 Updates

The Blazers also have camp invitees Darius Morris and Diante Garrett, both of whom are point guards and give the team more options in scrimmages. Both players have had stints on NBA rosters, and Morris played the game's final 4:46 Thursday, when the outcome was decided. "That's why they were brought in," Stotts said. "As has been noted, we don't have a prototypical third point guard right now, and so they were brought in to play that position." Portland has 15 players with guaranteed contracts, so for either Morris or Garrett to make the opening-day roster, the Blazers would either have to waive a player or execute a trade that would free up a roster spot. "They're here to try to make the team," Stotts said. Oregonian

October 11, 2014 Updates

Lillard and the Blazers don't regard the injury -- which they are calling a "left foot sprain" after originally listing it as an ankle injury – as serious or a long-term issue. "I would be able to play if it was a regular season game, but it's preseason," Lillard said. "You don't want it to be nagging, ongoing throughout the season. It was more precautionary than anything else. I'm just trying to take care of it right now and get it over with. That's the smartest thing to do." Oregonian

October 9, 2014 Updates
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

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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