The Portland Trail Blazers are the 2013-14 NBA surprise team. Last year, they were a middling bottom of the pack team but this year they are one of the top five teams in the NBA. The reason for their success can be attributed to the team’s new found willingness to play defense combined with the superb all-star calibre play of LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard.
The Trail Blazers have always represented untapped potential. This is a team that over the past several years has had great players but never great teams. They win the draft lottery, pick Greg Oden with the number one pick and never see him reach his potential, similar to what happened with Sam Bowie, the number two draft pick in 1984. The number two draft pick in 2007 was superstar Kevin Durant who was taken by the Seattle Supersonics who are now the Oklahoma Thunder. This franchise has epitomized the definition of snakebitten.
However, so far in 2013-2014 the Portland Trail Blazers have played to their immense potential. They are winning the games against less talented teams that they are expected to win and they are winning against the more accomplished teams in the NBA. In the toughest conference in the NBA, the Western Conference, the Portland Trailblazers are the number one ranked team.
With the way the Portland Trailblazers are playing fans should start saving up for playoff tickets because they look destined to make them this year. This team has quality players in both the starting lineup and their second unit. They can score either from the inside or from the perimeter led by shooting guard Nicolas Batum. Most importantly, they are playing with concerted effort for 48 minutes per game and the results can be seen in their record of 15 wins and 3 losses. The one thing that seems apparent to basketball observers is that the Trailblazers will be a major problem for opponents in the 2013-2014 NBA season.