Portland Trail Blazers Season Preview: Can the Blazers Stay Injury Free?
When I take a look back at the last season for the Portland Trail Blazers, one question confuses and disappoints me more than any other.
How did the Blazers suffer from that many injuries?
Early on, Portland lost centers Greg Oden and Joel Pryzbilla for the entire season. In my opinion, this proved to be insurmountable losses.
Key members Brandon Roy and Nicolas Batum missed substantial time. Even Travis Outlaw and Rudy Fernandez suffered from the injury bug.
In spite of these crippling injuries, the Blazers fought and clawed their way to earn the a playoff seed and squared off against the Phoenix Suns, who they lost to in Game 6 while trying to overcome a knee injury to Roy that limited his ability.
After this disappointing season, in which the Blazers failed to improve past the first round of the playoffs, Blazers fans find hope in the upcoming season.
There's not many weaknesses on the Portland roster for the upcoming season. Oden returns, Roy is healthy, and there is added depth with the addition of Wesley Matthews.
But the injury prone tag has been added to the Portland Trail Blazers and many experts question if they can overcome it.
As the saying goes, lightning cannot strike the same place twice. Surely, that many injuries can't occur on the a young, athletic team again.
The Blazers are definitely not an old team of veterans whose bodies can't handle an 82 game schedule.
Would anyone have predicted the Blazers to be the team most devastated by injuries going into last season? The popular guess would most likely have been the Boston Celtics who rely on players largely considered past their prime.
What scares me is the fact many of the injuries the Trail Blazer players suffered required surgery which can lead to re-aggravation injuries.
Also, Greg Oden is undeniably injury prone. It's awful that such a talented athlete has had to deal with so many injuries in such a short amount of time. But if he can keep his body healthy for an entire season, the Blazers, in my opinion, would be a force in the Western Conference.
Only time will tell if injury bug will bite Portland once again, but for all those Rip City faithful let's hope that karma retribution can keep it away.
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