My wife and I went to Portland for a weekend getaway last year, it was the first vacation we took alone together since our son was born. I had forgotten that marijuana had been legalized there for a few years now, like I knew it was but I just hadn't put any thought into it. So when we were walking around the city, we saw a dispensary and I really wanted to go in since I never could in California up until that point. The first dispensary we went to was a lot like in that show Disjointed on Netflix, it was a bunch of young stoners who just love smoking weed. They were nice, but they didn't know too much about their products.
On the way back home, we stopped at a second dispensary since it was going to be the last one we could go to until marijuana became legal here in California. This place was totally different, the workers were all 40+ years old, when we walked in they asked what I would be treating myself for (stress, pain, disease, etc.). When we walked into the back, every different strain of weed had a description of where it was from, what it was used for, and how it was grown. The experience of these two vastly different places are indicative of Portland's basketball team. A group of guys who have different styles of play, but still find a way to keep it lit.
The Portland Trail Blazers played great throughout the whole season and got themselves the 3 seed and a first round matchup with the New Orleans Pelicans. They already lost home court advantage as they went down 1-0 in the series behind a huge Playoff Rondo game. This is the first time they have home court advantage in a series in the Damian Lillard era, and they have already found a way to lose it. But we're not here for negativity, we're here to talk about how the Blazers will turn it around and knock end Anthony Davis' championship hopes.
A blessing in disguise was the fact that the Blazers only got 3 points between CJ McCollum and Damian Lillard in the first half, and they only lost the game by 3 points. Those two will get their points, and it will spark their offense. Jusuf Nurkic proved to be at a significant disadvantage against Anthony Davis, but everyone is. But some increased minutes to Ed Davis could show an improvement on the defensive end and allow the Blazers to set more of their focus on putting the ball in the basket. This series will go 7 and the Blazers will prove why the home court advantage was so important to them.
For the third time in three years, we will get the Golden State Warriors and Blazers series, but this time will have a different outcome. Steph Curry will not be able to overcome his injury, which will allow Dame to get anything he wants against Quinn Cook, or any other guard they put on him. Dame Time will be in full effect as he will average 40 points per game and will go toe to toe with Kevin Durant for 6 games. The Warriors big men will be no challenge for Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins, as the Blazers were 3rd in the league in rebounds per game while the Warriors were a mediocre 17th. The Blazers will clinch another home series victory when Dame hits a fadeaway three pointer at the buzzer to send them to the Western Conference Finals, and will give him another reason to make a song.
They will still maintain their home court advantage in the Western Conference Finals when they face off against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Blazers have been one of the best free throw shooting teams all season at 80% which put them at 3rd in the NBA, whereas the Thunder are 29th with 71%. In what will be a tightly contested series, this will be the deciding factor. Over the offseason, Dame and CJ were lobbying for Hoodie Melo to join their squad and add another scorer. Carmelo Anthony will get booed every game in Portland and will average 3 points per game on the road in this series. A clutch Game 7 performance by Evan Turner on both ends of the floor will lead the Blazers to the NBA Finals.
The Boston Celtics are currently up 1-0 in their series, and look to be well coached enough to make a run. Brad Stevens will coach his team to the Finals, and the backcourt of the Blazers will be chomping at the bit to go against guys like Terry Rozier and Shane Larkin. The Blazers have been one of the best teams in the NBA in terms of turnover percentage as they are 6th in NBA with just 12% of their possessions ending in a turnover. Allowing themselves to have as many possessions as possible against one of the best defensive teams will give them a great chance to put up big points. CJ McCollum will break the record for most threes made in a single Finals series and will win the Finals MVP. Damian Lillard will be happy his team won the Finals, but will continue to talk about how he is underrated since he didn't win the MVP. No disrespect Dame Dolla, but you're not underrated anymore.
Dame Time is always fun to watch...
Just a man trying to make the most of his time on this planet.