Portland Trail Blazers WiretapPortland Trail Blazers Wiretap

Damian Lillard: D'Angelo Russell 'Poked The Bear'

Jan 11, 2017 1:15 PM

D'Angelo Russell engaged Damian Lillard in a war of words and had to be separated. Lillard had shot 3 of 14 from the field and the Portland Trail Blazers held just a one-point lead over the Los Angeles Lakers. Lillard responded by scoring 13 points, including 11 in a row.

"[Russell] poked the bear and you seen what happened the rest of the game," Lillard said.

Lillard said that confrontation with Russell "absolutely" ignited his strong play.

"As far as that situation, since last game, he's been doing little slick elbows," Lillard said of Russell. "And I play the game clean. I'm from Oakland. I ain't with that extra stuff and nobody can just do what they want to me.

"I got called for a foul to start the third quarter for reaching in, but when I reached in the only reason there was contact is because his elbow came up again. After he blocked my shot, I was walking to my spot, and I felt like he went out of his way to get that elbow in there again. And I told him, 'That ain't gonna fly.' And I wasn't interested in anything else that was said after that. We ain't going to do it on the court so we'll be in the back and whatever happens, happens."

Baxter Holmes/ESPN

Tags: Los Angeles Lakers, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA

Cavs Trading 2017 First Rounder To Get 2018 Returned From Blazers

Jan 5, 2017 8:37 PM

The Cleveland Cavaliers are trading their 2017 first round pick to the Portland Trail Blazers in order to get their previously traded 2018 first round pick back.

The Cavaliers will then trade their 2019 first round pick to the Atlanta Hawks as part of the Kyle Korver deal.

Cleveland traded their 2017 first rounder to Portland at last year's trade deadline as part of the Anderson Varejao deal.

Because of the Stepien Rule, teams cannot trade first round picks for consecutive drafts.

Brian Windhorst/ESPN

Tags: Atlanta Hawks, Cleveland Cavaliers, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor, NBA NBA Draft, NBA Draft General

Damian Lillard Returning From Ankle Injury After Missing Five Games

Jan 5, 2017 3:38 PM

Damian Lillard will return to the Portland Trail Blazers' lineup on Thursday against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Lillard has missed the past five games with an ankle sprain.

Portland has posted a 2-3 record during the stretch Lillard has missed.

Lillard is averaging 27.0 points, 4.5 rebounds and 6.2 assists per game this season.

Chris Haynes/ESPN

Tags: Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA

Blazers Not Interested In DeMarcus Cousins, Nerlens Noel

Jan 4, 2017 1:25 PM

The Portland Trail Blazers don't have interest in trading for either DeMarcus Cousins or Nerlens Noel.

Noel figures to remain on the trading block through the deadline as he approaches restricted free agency with the Philadelphia 76ers having a surplus of centers.

The Blazers could use a rim protector at center to anchor their defense, something Noel excels at. Mason Plumlee starts but offers little on the defensive end while Festus Ezeli is unlikely to play this season.

Cousins' future with the Sacramento Kings remains unclear but they are currently the eighth seed with a 15-19 record.

Chris Haynes/ESPN

Tags: Nerlens Noel, DeMarcus Cousins, Philadelphia Sixers, Portland Trail Blazers, Sacramento Kings, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Terry Stotts' Job Secure Despite Blazers' Disappointing Start

Jan 4, 2017 1:02 PM

Terry Stotts' job as head coach of the Portland Trail Blazers is not in jeopardy at this time.

The Blazers won 44 games last season as one of the NBA's success stories but they're just 15-21 and currently outside the playoffs this season.

The organization believes the Blazers will reenter the playoff picture as soon as they're healthy. 

Stotts signed a three-year extension with the Blazers in May of 2016.

Chris Haynes/ESPN

Tags: Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

Damian Lillard Day-To-Day With Sprained Ankle

Dec 25, 2016 10:39 AM

Damian Lillard is day-to-day after rolling his ankle in Friday's loss to the Spurs.

Results of an X-ray came back negative but Lillard left the arena in a walking boot.

"I know I rolled it good. I went back in the game because I wanted to test it, and it hurt,'' Lillard said. "Went out there for a few possessions and it didn't make sense to even be out there."

Lillard is averaging 27.0 points and 6.2 assists per game.

Chris Haynes/ESPN

Tags: Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Injury

Festus Ezeli Likely To Undergo Season-Ending Knee Surgery

Dec 17, 2016 9:33 PM

Festus Ezeli will likely undergo season-ending surgery on his left knee.

Ezeli’s representatives at BDA Sports and the Portland Trail Blazers have not yet finalized the surgery, but he’s strongly leaning toward the procedure.

Ezeli's left knee has failed to adequately respond in rehab.

Ezeli signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Blazers after three seasons with the Golden State Warriors.

The deal is partially guaranteed in 2017-18 for $1 million out of his $7.7 million salary.

Shams Charania/The Vertical

Tags: Festus Ezeli, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Injury

Blazers Travel With 'Happy Lights' For Road Locker Rooms

Dec 8, 2016 3:36 PM

When the Portland Trail Blazers go on road trips, they bring their own supply of Sad lights for the visiting locker room.

The lights are named for what they are designed to counteract: Seasonal Affective Disorder, a depression-adjacent condition brought by a dearth of exposure to natural sunlight. The Blazers' traveling lights are roughly 2-foot by 3-foot rectangles facing out in the middle of their locker room on the road.

“The happy lights,” said Mason Plumlee.


The Blazers have long installed Sad lights within the ceilings of their Moda Center home locker room and above their practice facility court. “Our practice simulates the lighting at an arena,” Terry Stotts said. 

“I think it wakes you up,” Lillard said. “I feel like it brings a certain type of energy to the locker room and it’s become a part of our preparation now.”

“We try and have the lights in the locker room at least as bright as the arena” Stotts said. “So that when you come into the locker room at halftime, the lights don’t bring you down.”

Jake Fischer/Sports Illustrated

Tags: Portland Trail Blazers, NBA

Hassan Whiteside Considered Blazers 2nd Option In Free Agency

Dec 4, 2016 7:02 PM

Hassan Whiteside signed a four-year maximum contract with the Miami Heat worth approximately $98 million.

Whiteside first met with the Miami Heat and then the Dallas Mavericks before making his decision. 
Whiteside revealed he also liked the Portland Trail Blazers.

“Portland was my second option,” Whiteside said at the team’s Saturday shootaround in Portland. “I would have came here.”

ESPN reported last week that Portland “chased” Whiteside in free agency, but nothing was said of Whiteside’s interest.

Erik Garcia Gundersen/Miami Herald

Tags: Hassan Whiteside, Miami Heat, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

Evan Turner: Some Previous Coaches 'Didn't Comprehend My Game'

Nov 27, 2016 2:43 PM

Evan Turner signed a four-year, $70 million deal with the Portland Trail Blazers after finally establishing himself in the NBA with the Boston Celtics.

“I was most definitely comfortable there,” Turner said. “Going through certain situations where there were coaches who didn’t comprehend my game and I wasn’t always in position to be comfortable sometimes. When you finally find that mixture of great basketball and off-the-court [things], you definitely don’t take it for granted.”

The Celtics have missed Turner while he hasn't quite found his place with the Blazers.

“It’s just the comfortability here and I think sometimes I worry too much about stepping on toes,” Turner said. “They have reassured me to play how I play and they will adjust. It’s always going to be a big adjustment getting the plays down. The pace of it [in the Western Conference] is crazy. The last couple of weeks I am fully getting our plays second nature to me, and once again now it’s just building the consistency.”

Gary Washburn/Boston Globe

Tags: Evan Turner, Boston Celtics, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

Damian Lillard: We Got No Haters Here
The Blazers insist they won't end up like the Suns who exceeded expectations and then quickly became undone by infighting.

Zach Lowe/ESPN

Damian Lillard: We Kind Of Suck Right Now
Portland ranks 29th in defensive efficiency at 111.5 points per 100 possessions overall.

Joe Freeman/Oregonian

Festus Ezeli Seeks 2nd Opinion On Left Knee
Concerns have been emerging about the long-term health of Festus Ezeli's knee.

Joe Freeman/Oregonian

Kevin Durant Defends Greg Oden On 'Biggest NBA Bust' Comments
Greg Oden said he was "one of the biggest busts in NBA history" and that "it would only get worse as Kevin Durant continues doing big things."

Chris Haynes/ESPN

Greg Oden Expects To Be Remembered As 'Biggest Bust In NBA History'
Greg Oden played in just 82 games over five seasons with the Blazers due to various injuries.

Jeff Goodman/ESPN

Festus Ezeli Suffers Setback In Recovery From Left Knee Procedure
Festus Ezeli suffered swelling in his left knee after he took part in two Blazers practices on Oct. 17 and Oct. 18.

Jason Quick/CSNNW

Chandler Parsons Was Close To Signing With Blazers, 'Went With Heart' Choosing Memphis
Chandler Parsons was offered a four-year, $94.7 million contract in free agency by both the Grizzlies and Blazers.

Ronald Tillery/Memphis Commercial Appeal

RealGM Radio: Extension/Option Deadline With Dan Feldman
Host Danny Leroux and Dan Feldman of NBC's Pro Basketball Talk break down the NBA's rookie scale extension and option deadline.

RealGM Staff Report

Mason Plumlee Unlikely To Sign Extension With Blazers
Portland has depth at center with Leonard and Festus Ezeli in addition to Plumlee.

Jason Quick/Oregonian

Blazers Exercise 17-18 Options On Noah Vonleh, Shabazz Napier
Noah Vonleh posted averages of 3.6 points, 3.9 rebounds, 0.4 assists and 15.1 minutes in 78 games (56 starts) last season with the Blazers.

RealGM Staff Report

Blazers Undecided On Starting SF Despite Impressive Preseason By Maurice Harkless
Maurice Harkless has played the best and seems to have the best on-court chemistry with the rest of the Blazers' starting five

Joe Freeman/Oregonian

Blazers Waive Luis Montero
During the 2016 NBA preseason, Luis Montero recorded three points (1-1 3-PT), one assist and one block in his lone contest against Utah on Oct. 3.

RealGM Staff Report

Damian Lillard Excited To Play Off The Ball
The Blazers signed Evan Turner in free agency in a move that some questioned but he gives the team another playmaker with the ball in addition to Lillard and CJ McCollum.

Casey Holdahl/NBA.com

RealGM Radio: Northwest Division With David Locke, Adam Mares
Host Danny Leroux, David Locke of the Utah Jazz and Locked on Podcast Network and Adam Mares of Denver Stiffs break down the Northwest Division.

RealGM Staff Report

Damian Lillard Couldn't Bring Himself To Join Super Team
Damian Lillard won't hit free agency until 2021 at the earliest.

Andrew Joseph/For The Win

Paul Allen Comfortable With Big Financial Commitment To Blazers' Payroll
The Blazers became a far more expensive team in the short and long-term this offseason.

Joe Freeman/Oregonian

Blazers To 'Modernize' Uniforms Next Season
Portland's uniforms have remained relatively unchanged since the early 1990s.

Andy Giegerich/Portland Business Journal

Greg Stiemsma Agrees To Camp Deal With Blazers
Greg Stiemsma spent training camp ahead of the 15-16 season with the Magic.

Adrian Wojnarowski/The Vertical

Blazers Again Meet Up In San Diego For Workouts, Bonding
The Blazers have gone through basketball workouts and weight lifting sessions at San Diego State while also enjoying downtime together off the court.

Mike Richman/Oregonian

Noah Vonleh Out 3-4 Weeks With Surgery On Right Thigh
Noah Vonleh underwent a successful procedure to remove a bone fragment from his right thigh.

Mike Richman/Oregonian