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Saturday, October 31, 2009

New Blazer feature: Rate-a-Nate reader poll

Our readers have spoken, and the Oden-ometer will not be coming back this season. But since we're hearing a lot of chatter about whether Blazers coach Nate McMillan is really the right man to lead Portland to a pro hoops championship, we've decided to institute a new feature, Rate-a-Nate. Every so often, we'll ask readers how they think Coach is performing this year. 1 is the lowest rating (he's terrible), and 10 is the highest (he's the greatest). We'll average out the picks and post a running rating somewhere on the blog, after we have a decent sample. And we'll crank up a new round of the poll every couple of weeks or so.

So here's our first round on the subject:

On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being the best and 1 being the worst), how well is Nate McMillan performing this year as the coach of the Trail Blazers?
pollcode.com free polls

UPDATE, 6:02 p.m.: Based on the first 66 responses:

We'll update further later.

UPDATE, 11/1, 1:58 a.m.: Through 85 votes, he's at 5.6. For a more current figure (updated currently), see our upper left sidebar, or click here.

Comments (9)

Nate seems to say the right things. He gets interviewed at the start of the 4th quarter and says they need to stop taking jump shots and get it inside. Oden is being much more aggressive, but LA needs to start earning his $12M/year. He was 4-12 FG against an undersized Denver defense, but most disturbing was the shots he didn't take. He kept getting the ball down low, then would kick it back out to an open perimeter player, which is exactly what Denver wanted him to do.

We all know Brandon is money and worth his contract, but Aldridge needs to stop playing like a $7M forward and start playing like $12M forward. That means getting a lot tougher inside and dictating the style of play. Since he's the guy with the highly speculative salary commitment, maybe you need a Rate-a-LaMarcus.

I think Brandon might be the head coach now.

So does this mean we will start blaming McMillan for the Trailblazers performance or lack thereof, while players taking the shots and handling the ball like Greg Oden are given a free pass?

Either way, Durant is still better than Oden and will always be. Hiding a poll ain't going to hide Oden turning out to be more like Kwame Brown than Tim Duncan.

We're not hiding anything. Compared to the expectations, Oden is a bust. That's such an old story at this point that it's not worth dwelling on game after game.

One reason that he's a bust is that he's not allowed to play offense. That craziness is Nate and Roy's fault.

What do you mean by not allowed to play offense?

Is it Oden's own fault in picking up ticky tack fouls that limit his ability to get into an offensive rhythm?

Is it that Oden is on a team full of potential All Star players?

Is it like Orlando where Portland does not have good enough passers to pass to the ball him up high in the post?

I would be a little bit hesitant to blame Roy for taking Oden's points. I would be more inclined to blame the forwards for not passing or not passing well enough and Steve Blake for not running the offense well enough.

Then again, the players run the offense as the coach teaches them in practice, therefore McMillan is and will always be part to blame for Oden's development or lack thereof.

In the end, for big men to be good, they need good passers who can pass the ball up high. Shoulder length and right at the head is ideal.

We were all witness to Orlando last year with Dwight catching the ball at waist level for it to be subsequently stripped and/or allowing his defenders to put him in a worse position than he was before the pass.

When Oden gets the ball, his first look is always to pass it back outside, unless somebody fell down and he has a dunk. There's little or no true post play for him. Part of the problem is the plodding pace that Nate and Roy want. Oden's not open very often.

I can't remember the last "jump shoot first" team that won a title.

LAL prefers the post with 3 point shooters to open the post up.

Boston just mean mugs everyone and laughs at them when the opposing team is dribbling up the court.

San Antonio has Tim Duncan doing the dirty work with both Parker and Ginobili never afraid to take it to the whole.

Miami or should I say Dwayne Wade shoved it square down Dirk's pussy little nose back in 2005-2006.

Hell, thinking about it, all of the NBA champions going back to the Bulls in 1997-1998 have had a post play first mentality.

Too bad Portland seems to want to bank its future on Travis Outlaw 15 footers and hoping that Rudy Fernandez can knock down 50% of his treys. Then again, they do have Roy for a post game, but you need more than that to knock off the Lakers.

Aldridge wants to be a jump-shooter, too.

The Blazers need to get a post game out of somebody -- even Webster if the giants aren't into it.

Outlaw on Saturday night cancelled out Outlaw in the season opener. Plus, he's no help on defense. It's not like he's a rookie. The guy belongs on Golden State.

We need a F/C that will take the ball to the basket. Jump shooting teams don't fare well in the post-season. This team is as good as their outside shot, and their perimeter D is pretty bad.

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