With the end of the regular season drawing near, the Portland Trail Blazers have begun to make a name for themselves, defeating some of the more dominant teams in the NBA. Currently standing as the seventh seed in the Western Conference, the Blazers are a contender come Playoff time. But they still have one more question to answer.
Tuesday night, the Blazers stunned the nation, taking down the No. 2 seeded Dallas Mavericks in a 104-101 home victory. It was in this game that Brandon Roy looked like his old self, scoring 21 points off the bench in his best game since his dual arthroscopic knee surgery. With the apparent resurgence of B-Roy as a deadly scorer, who is to become the Blazers' primary offensive option? He or LaMarcus Aldridge?
A difficult decision for Coach McMillan to make, but one that must be made.
Though Roy scored 21 points against Dallas and 18 points against Denver, both in winning efforts, he is not 100 percent, and not nearly as consistent as he once was. In his nine games after surgery, Roy has averaged 11.9 points per game, including a four-point, a five-point, and a six-point outing. He is slowly re-adjusting to the game of basketball, and though he is showing great progress, he still has work to do.
In addition to the question of his consistency, the true condition of Roy's knees are up for speculation. Though he has stated that he's felt better than he's felt in a long time, his knees definitely are not ready to take the work load that comes with being the No.1 offensive option on a team. He's stated numerous times that he would be willing to accept a sixth man role if it would help the team, and for now, it looks like that's where he would fit best.
The biggest reason of all as to why Brandon Roy shouldn't be the primary offensive option is because LaMarcus Aldridge is having a career year. The biggest All Star snub, Aldridge is averaging 22.4 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks per game, while shooting 49.5 percent from the field. He scores at an efficient rate and causes huge mismatches for opposing teams with his shooting ability, his low post offense, and his ability to finish at the rim. In their win against Dallas Tuesday night, Aldridge led all scorers with 30 points and eight rebounds, completely schooling Dirk Nowitzki. Though Brandon Roy received much of the spotlight, it was Aldridge whose work weighed more in the end.
When Brandon Roy establishes himself as a dominant scorer once again, the Portland Trail Blazers will have two definite go-to guys on the offensive end. But seeing as though he is just coming off of an injury, the chances of him being able to produce big are not favorable. He will have outbursts of scoring in the Playoffs, but until he shows that he can consistently produce for the team, Aldridge needs to be the primary option.