Portland Trail Blazers: What Does Brandon Roy's Retirement Mean?

Lance SmithCorrespondent IDecember 10, 2011

DALLAS, TX - APRIL 16:  Guard Brandon Roy #1 of the Portland Trail Blazers loses his balance in Game One of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2011 NBA Playoffs on April 16, 2011 at American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

In what should be a saddening moment for most NBA fans, Brandon Roy is officially retiring for medical reasons.

Brandon Roy had a picture-perfect career for a while; he won the Rookie of the Year award in 2007, and he made the All-Star Team the three following years. In the process, he brought the Blazers out of the "Jail Blazers Era" and even took them to the Playoffs a couple times.

Then, at the end of the 2009-2010 Season, he resumed a chain of knee injuries that ruined the Blazers' 2010 Playoffs chances and sent them on a crazy ride for the 2010-2011 Season. And then, when he came back, he absolutely stunned the world in the 4th quarter of Game 4 of the first round of the Playoffs.

The NBA community had hope for him, but yesterday, it came out that he's going to retire. 

The good news for the Blazers is that they can use their amnesty clause on him. The bad news is that they're not getting anything back for a player who, despite not being healthy enough to be anywhere near as good as he could be, is still productive when on the active roster. For more information on the retirement, check out this link

Earlier this year, I wrote an article about whether Roy or Wesley Matthews should start this coming season. I said Matthews, but I guess it doesn't matter now. Still, this could be a big loss for the Blazers. He would've been, until fully healthy, a tremendous sixth man.

After this season, they'll have a lot of cap space. And they'll also have holes in both the center and point guard positions. You never know who will be free agents then... And for now, they have enough cap space to make a trade that might require them to absorb more contract size than they are putting out. 

So there are some good facets of this retirement. But it leaves some questions.

Who's going to score 24 points in one quarter when down in the Playoffs? Who's going to add that scoring punch that the Blazers so often lack? Do they still have enough talent to be considered dark-horses for in the West?

Well, I think they're going to have to make another move or two. And maybe this won't be the year, although I'd be shocked if they didn't win 50 games.

Nevertheless, I think that if Roy's retirement destroys their title chances this year (although we're still in the first day of Free Agency), it could open some doors in the long run, especially when you consider that next offseason, they'll have cap space to sign a big free agent and Bird Rights to Raymond Felton, Greg Oden or both.