Rip City Current, Part 1: Paddling Upstream This season’s Blazers are setting sail on that 82 game journey and in the brutal Western Conference, it’s paddling upstream against a strong current. With so many returning, yet unproven bench players there is no rookie hype, no blank page to fill in with script. From summer league and preseason we saw glimpses of improvement and got a taste of what Kaman and Blake bring to the mix. According to the coaching staff, starters and vets, everyone got better. The focus has been on becoming a better defensive team and resting the starters more. After 3 games we were ranked 9th in the league defensively and 19th in the league offensively. It seems after a somewhat disappointing start that we are treading water and maybe even losing some ground on offense after being a top ranked offense last season. Next comes the inevitable fan panic that follows a couple of ugly losses. I’ve compiled a list that I hope fans have some fun with entering this season. riverman Choices when the current gets rough: 1. Be patient. Let them develop and adapt just like all the other 29 teams 2. Cheer the team on and hope for the best 3. Melt down. Vent. Start half a dozen angry threads. Hang out in a Spurs forum for a while and contemplate buying a Duncan jersey 4. Really feel good about Lamarcus and Meyers shooting more 3’s 5. Feel really sorry for Victor Claver. Just when he was becoming fluent in English comprehension 6. Believe the Blazers are an elite team and can contend for a title 7. See us missing the playoffs altogether 8. Think Paul Allen will move the team to Seattle complete with several “I told you so” conspiracy theories 9. Just enjoy drinking beer, eating snacks and watching the dancers at halftime 10. Consider yourself a fair weather Meyers Leonard fan and find yourself hoping Stotts brings him back into the game but not admitting it 11. Want to see all our tallest guys on the court at the same time….just once 12. Post a scathing, controversial thread just to see it go for at least 50 pages 13. Take the season one game at a time and enjoy the games even if we lose 14. Wait until New Year’s Eve to evaluate the team or make any predictions 15. Believe we have a bona-fide 6th man in the making 16. (blazer wookie's, see post #9) 17. Let numbers and charts or graphs determine every member of the organizations value and then watch Moneyball over and over and over 18. After beating the Cavs soundly, think Lillard should go back on twitter and make some new snarky comments Feel free to chime in and Go Blazers!