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January 18, 2015 Updates

“I come from a humble background, you know good parents,” Wright said. “And that year I spent at South Kent Prep away from my parents in Connecticut, that really helped me as far as getting up on my own, being on time, [growing up]. We had to wear blazers and ties every day, so I was dressing like a professional already. That was like my jumpstart. Before a lot of these kids made that jump, [they didn’t have that]. I was already polished so all I had to do was follow Pat Riley and the HEAT’s rules and I was fine.” Basketball Insiders

January 17, 2015 Updates

Free agency presents a similar dilemma. There are several free agents that the Knicks and their fans can dream about, but landing a Marc Gasol or LaMarcus Aldridge is a long shot. The agent — as much as agents enjoy it — cautioned that the Knicks need to avoid overpaying for second-tier talent: “They can’t do what they always do — get tied up in deals you don’t want.” The scout agreed, noting, “If they were to get Gasol, all right, then you have ’Melo, Gasol and the rest of those misfits. You’re better, but you’re not there. Keep your cap room available. Don’t overspend on a mediocre player and fill in the holes.” Bergen Record

January 16, 2015 Updates

It was tough to tell just how quickly Nicolas Batum jetted out of the Portland Trail Blazers locker room Wednesday night, but judging from the streaks still cascading down the sides of the plastic cup, it was moments before the media was allowed in. Maybe he had a date, or a family matter, or maybe he had to pack for Thursday morning's early departure to San Antonio, but Batum wasn't around Wednesday to answer the biggest question surrounding the Trail Blazers these days: What in the world is going on with his game? Oregonian

"We need him,'' LaMarcus Aldridge said. "I think he knows that. He's a big part of this team and what we do, offensively and defensively. So, we need that Nic back from last year. I don't think he's happy with it, I think he's trying to figure it out and I think every guy on the team is trying to help him figure it out, too.'' Oregonian

So what is going on with Batum? If I was to guess, there are several factors at play here. He has been going through a complicated and messy divorce. Before the season started, I asked him whether he worried his personal life would disrupt his professional life. He scoffed, pointing to his performance that summer for France in the World Cup. "Do you think it affected my mind during the World Cup? I don't think so. I didn't show it,'' Batum said. "When this story came out, it was the same night I got 28 points.'' Oregonian

January 15, 2015 Updates

Portland is among a bevy of teams that covet Chandler. The Trail Blazers are in need of punch coming off of the bench, and Chandler would nicely fit that bill. The L.A. Clippers are also very interested in Chandler. Denver Post

January 14, 2015 Updates

"Last year in the playoffs, when we played as well as we did, it just felt like we were one of those teams that could do it," Lillard said. "Last year we were a young team that was kind of new to winning. This year we're one of those teams. We perform at a high level consistently. We win without depending on offense. We play better, we get along, we're confident. We've won 30 games. I think we just have to keep the same mentality that we have and remember that we are an elite team." ESPN.com

The reason this all worked for Portland as quickly as it did is that the Trail Blazers saw it, too. What Lillard could do for this team, the way the pieces could all fit together one day. "Honestly, the thing I'm most proud of is the discipline we had with Dame," general manager Neil Olshey said. "We didn't bring anyone in. We didn't go after any free-agent point guards to buy him some time. We drafted him, we believed in him, and we just said, 'This is going to be his ball. He's going to be our guy.'" ESPN.com

Portland is among a bevy of teams that covet Chandler. The Trail Blazers are in need of punch coming off of the bench, and Chandler would nicely fit that bill. The Denver Post

Second-year swingman Allen Crabbe returned to practice after missing the last two games with a strained knee. But the Blazers are taking a wait-and-see approach with him for Wednesday's game against the Los Angeles Clippers according to head coach Terry Stotts. "I felt good," Crabbe said. "It's a little sore still. For the most part I felt good. Went through most of practice, didn't sit out too much." Crabbe stayed home when his team flew to Los Angeles. He said he still feels "tentative" on the knee. "(I) still don't want to jump off it, put too much pressure on it. It feels fine," Crabbe said. "It feels fine. It really does. I just want to take it day-by-day now really." Columbian

January 13, 2015 Updates

adidas officially unveiled the first signature shoe for Damian Lillard on Tuesday, the D Lillard 1. We’ll have a full launch event recap in the days ahead, featuring comments from the designers and from Lillard himself. But for now, here’s a first look at the shoes, and some of the different colorways that will be releasing. The D Lillard 1 Rip City version in Blazers colors launches at adidas and Foot Locker on February 6 for $105. NBCSports.com

January 12, 2015 Updates

He saw the videos of the mass rally in Paris on Sunday. “I was proud,” Batum said. “I was proud of everybody because close to a million people on the streets and no incidents. Nothing happened. There were 50 world leaders there too and nothing happened. That shows that people greatly respect each other and what happened was bad and evil people. To be honest we had Jewish people and Christian people and Muslim people, we had everyone black, white they stand together. “I was proud to be a Frenchman.” NBCSports.com

January 11, 2015 Updates

Backup shooting guard Allen Crabbe suffered a strained left knee during the team's win over the Miami Heat Thursday night and will miss at least the next two games. Crabbe injured himself with 10:08 left in the second quarter against the Heat when he was contesting a Danny Granger layup. Granger gained position near the hoop, with Crabbe behind him, and pump-faked, enticing Crabbe to jump. Oregonian

During halftime of West Linn's eventual 92-75 win, Matthews attempted three shots from half court coming up well short on all three. The NBA's leader in three point field goals conceded that the shooting display might have been his worst of the season. "Probably considering I went from signing autographs, it was freezing cold and I decided to throw up half court shots," Matthews said with a laugh prior to Saturday's game against the Orlando Magic. "But they were all on line." Oregonian

In an unexpected twist, the best entertainment at the Rose Quarter on Saturday night occurred outside the cavernous walls of the Moda Center. The Westboro Baptist Church protested outside the arena as promised, but the group of 20 didn't last 20 minutes as a massive counter-protest drowned out their objections to the Trail Blazers' support of gay marriage. Then, after the Westboro protesters left, the rabid counter-protestors stayed around for a full-on dance party that featured stage lights and speakers. All the while, inside the Moda Center, the uninspired Blazers allowed the Orlando Magic to hang around longer than they should have before grinding out a 103-92 victory. Oregonian

January 9, 2015 Updates


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


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