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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on March 1, 2007 5:01 PM. The previous post in this blog was Why your 401k is being trashed. The next post in this blog is When Greg met Jim. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Thursday, March 1, 2007

Blazers: Back to being losers

Just when the Portland Trail Blazers appeared to have stabilized, and finally had somebody with some common sense making decisions, they go and do this. Oh, and they're bringing some dude from the Seahawks in to run the team! That will work.

Just this morning I was asking around to see if my buddies wanted to go in with me on season tickets. Well, you can put that plan on hold. Paul Allen, you are a true numbskull.

UPDATE, 7:25 p.m.: Some Blazer fans are speculating that Kevin Pritchard, a younger guy who's been working the personnel side of the Blazers roster, will become the new general manager of the team, and so things will become rosier. I wouldn't bank on either proposition. Today's announcement by the team makes it clear that whoever replaces Patterson will be on a very short leash, the other end of which will be held by a Bob Whitsitt type up in Seattle. And the fact that Patterson quit with a quarter of the season left to go, and crucial negotiations over the building still in progress, is downright frightening. The chances of this going down as a great day in Blazer history -- or even a good day -- seem extraordinarily slim.

Comments (25)

Best thing that could have possibly happened to the Trail Blazers! C'mon, Patterson was a lame duck on the basketball side of things. Allen brought him in for the bankruptcy stuff.

With Patterson out of the way, Allen must give, Kevin Pritchard, that genius of a basketball mind the GM position!

Football, Basketball. Same diff.

Maybe the new CEO could run Allen's sports management company too. Oh.

Let him manage food/beverage selections while he's at it (how about a Baja Fresh at the Rose Garden?).

Heck, stick a broom up is a$$ and he can sweep the floor too. Cause he's going to be moving around a lot.

We are now going back to Bob Whitsitt era, only this time we will be screwing with the heads of Nate McMillan and his young players. I'm going from a buy to a hold, effective immediately.

I disagree with you on this one Jack. I listened to an interview the Seahawks CEO this evening on the way home from work. He more or less stated that Pritchard was going to be the next GM. And Pritchard has been the only one making good basketball decisions over the last few years, including a decision in which he was overruled by Patterson where Pritchard wanted to draft Chris Paul instead of Martell Webster.

The reason Patterson was let go today was that the option on his contract was up today. He was effectively gone already for some time.

He did an okay job at cleaning up Whitsitt's mess but it was under his regime that he had lawyers come in and "instruct" players how to respond to police. Remember Zach's incident downtown last summer where he refused to cooperate; he was just following what Steve Patterson told him to do.

This is actually a continuing step in the right direction for this franchise. Trust me. The blazers are doing better this year on many levels despite Patterson, not because of him.

I have to disagree with you also, Jack. Pritchard is the future (present??) of the front office for the Blazers. Before he came here, he was groomed in the Spurs front office, which is known as being one of the class acts of the NBA. And as Hilsy stated, he knows how to draft. The Blazers got 3 awesome players this last year. Things are definately looking up.

Trailblazers...?


Why would anyone give a rat's aft end?

The bottom line is that it's all going to be run out of Seattle -- the source of every bad decision that's been made with this team in the last 10 years. Everybody, including Pritchard, gets to answer to a football guy or a bean counter. Everybody gets another dose of the Vulcan mantras: There's no such thing as chemistry, and You all answer to Seattle. And who knows what happens to the arena repurchase deal? Nice time to switch out the top guy.

Can't wait for the next Shawn Kemp deal, which I suspect is right around the corner.

BTW, if Pritchard's going to be the next GM, why wouldn't they have made him acting GM today?

Add me in with the crowd who says Patterson was a liability, never an asset. He was always way too slick for my liking, and I'd gotten the impression a while back that the Blazers were improving in spite of Patterson, not because of him.

Allen subbed in someone temporarily from Seattle when Patterson lost his game of chicken and decided to take his marbles & go home already.

I'd bet that Pritchard will get the GM title by the end of the month.

And I have to believe that the team's lopsided victory tonight says something about their view of the Patterson era.

Even if Pritchard's made the GM, we'll see how he and Nate like answering to a Seattle football guy.

Re Jack's comment of 9.10 pm I agree.....the Vulcans have had months to see if Pritchard had any "game" and when they pulled he trigger surprise, surprise some honcho from Seattle magically appears in Tualatin to hold Pattterson's hand as he fell on his sword.

If this was orderly the the press conference would have had Pritchard standing there not Mr.Seewickly from Sea.

Allen was crazy like a fox when it came to the timing of this. Rookie of the year Adam Morrison was in town last night and he didn't want the press talking about how he'd screwed up by taking Thomas/Adridge and Roy instead. Very smart move.

/sarcasm

Seriously...You're exactly right to compare the new guy to Whitsitt. He's the guy who's got Paul's ear on everything. However there was something I noticed durng his radio interview last night. Among Whitsitt, Patterson, Nash, and any coach he's the only guy I've ever heard refer to Paul Allen by his first name. When talking with the press, all the rest have called him Mr. Allen. I thought that was interesting.

Does this mean Global Spectrum is out at the Rose Quarter? THAT would be a huge mistake. Pritchard will be the new GM, but he's gonna be on a very short leash. I'm not sure about any Shawn Kemp deals, but I certainly wouldn't be surprised.

Aldridge scored 30 points in 27 minutes and left the game late in the 3rd quarter. Roy had a near triple double with 14 points, nine assists and eight rebounds. Pritchard is looking awfully smart right now.

As long as this promising young team continues to improve on the court and starts putting wins together, Allen could name the man in the moon as president and it wouldn't matter. But if you believe what they're saying in the media, Patterson had the personality of well...a Bob Whitsitt. And it would serve the Blazers and their fans well by putting someone in there who can schmooze and enlighten and understands marketing. And here's a radical idea: someone who lives/works in Portland.

Sorry Jack but your way off base on this one.

The guy they are bringing in to run the buisness side of things is sharp, he has managed pro sports teams for 25 years. he is the guy that came in and cleaned up the Seahawks mess after Whitsit.

Patterson was part of the problem. Now they should end up with Pritchard running the player/personnel side and the new guy running the business.

The Patterson firing has driven Hair Mousse stocks into a frantic freefall on the NYSE... China is in a panic... what will he do with all those beautiful, flowing locks of unemployed hair now????

Shave it off like Britney, we hope.

That one comment that we could have drafted Chris Paul if it weren't for Patterson, kind of got to me. Is that really true? Ouch, Chris Paul is one hell of a player.

Martell Webster was Paul Allen's pick all the way. He was on local TV up north every night and Allen couldn't resist. Chris Paul was never coming here.

Jack, you'll soon learn that this was a great move for the Blazers. Patterson is everything that was still wrong with the Blazers. Internal surveys showed that Patterson was the #1 thing that was wrong with the Blazers, both among Blazer employees and Blazer fans. He's a cold individual that took all the praise for moves that Pritchard made. He was also responsible for a great deal on the "hatred" between PAM and the Blazers. The arrogent attitude he portrayed in the arena negotiations did much more harm than good. There is also rumblings that the arena deal agreement would not get finalized until Steve Patterson was out of the picture.

Tod Leiweke will not run or micro-manage the Blazers. Even if he did, given how he turned around the Seahawks, that wouldn't be that bad of a thing.

March 1, 2007 was a great day for the Blazers.

Full disclosure, life long Laker fan here, but I do reside in the Portland Metro and there's a latent part in me that really wants to like the Blazers. It's a shame what a city with such a loyal fan base who really wants an NBA team has been served up over the past decade, from the underachieving teams with Steinbrenneresque payrolls through the totally thugged out era. Is it so hard to assemble a reasonably competitive, somewhat-likable team with the desire and ability to entertain sports fans on most nights? Seems to me that's all Portland fans really ask for, but I digress.

The guy they are bringing in to run the buisness side of things is sharp, he has managed pro sports teams for 25 years. he is the guy that came in and cleaned up the Seahawks mess after Whitsit.

Does he know the NBA? Does he know and care about Portland? Can he run Portland when he lives in Seattle? The answers are no, no, and no.

Patterson is everything that was still wrong with the Blazers.

You wish it were true, but Allen's much worse. I have no sympathy for Patterson, but his quitting in mid-season, the total disruption of any front office chemistry, and the sudden deus ex machina of another football whiz kid with a remote control in his hands are all bad signs.

Not to mention that they showed Pritchard no respect at all that I saw yesterday.

An interesting perspective here:

Maybe running the Blazers was always going to be an impossible job for anyone who came after Whitsitt. There are Blazers employees who speak highly of Patterson, and the team finally appears to be showing improvement thanks to the additions of coach Nate McMillan and Rookie of the Year favorite Brandon Roy. But the overall morale of that organization remains low, and the Blazers will never be able to make a sincere attempt to win back their fans until they can rally their own employees to work as a team.

It would be a mistake to assume that the Blazers will simply promote Golub and assistant GM Kevin Pritchard to share Patterson's abandoned titles. If so, then wouldn't the team have made that announcement and cleaned up its business immediately?

You mean the Trail Blazers are still in town? That's a bummer. The best thing for the team, if they are to stay in Portland, would be to integrate. It matters not who is running the show, you can't rely on a bunch of getto ex-pats with little or no social graces to pull in the fans.

R.J. - you're living in the past. Do some research before posting derogatory statements about the current players you obviously don't know about, and whom you are confusing with past Blazers. Doesn't really matter what your entitled opinion is after all, but it's not hard to stay informed if you want to. I'm just concerned you might make a "Jail Blazers" comment some time at a party and be met with patronizing chuckles. And I'd love to know what you mean by "integrate."

Can't wait for the next Shawn Kemp deal, which I suspect is right around the corner.

You stop that. You stop that right now. That's clearly hate speech.

Honestly, I can't figure out how it will play. I certainly wasn't bummed when Patterson was gone. Also, it's not like he was a "Portland" guy. Tons of execs in the league have no local anchors. They're nomads.

And really, if Leiweke is just shrewd enough to not run the numbers into the ground, I don't care if he's based out of Sri Lanka.

Rosy-tinted scenario: He runs the biz successfully, stays out of Pritchard's way on b-ball/local stuff, and acts as a successful buffer with the Fearless Leader.

Time for my meds!


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