The Portland Trail Blazers have had a horrendous start to the season. New head coach Chauncey Billups has not been able to get his team playing the way he had hoped. Despite Damian Lillard expressing a desire not to leave and join another team, if the Blazers keep playing this poorly, he may have to leave for the sake of his career.
CJ McCollum spoke recently about the situation in Portland with The Athletic. He said that the circumstances are different from anything he has seen before. Everything that has happened has an effect on the team’s performance on the court. But this is taking a massive toll on him.
“This is different than anything I’ve ever experienced because of the circumstances. This is the first year of my career where we lost our whole coaching staff, brought in a new coach, a new staff, the GM gets fired in the middle of the season… all of that affects you on the court. But there is no excuses. I didn’t come here to tell you ‘There’s a lot of sh*t going on’ … but yeah, there is. There’s sh*t going on every day. And I’m a f*cking human being. But look, at the end of the day, my job is to play basketball. So I go play basketball.”
McCollum has not had an easy road so far, and things have gotten worse, even suffering a significant injury in a collapsed right lung that will keep him out indefinitely. Things have gone from bad to worse so far for McCollum and the Blazers, and it has not just been on the court.
The Blazers have been a franchise in disarray for some time. Aside from their 11-14 record, they have had internal problems, especially when it comes to their front office. They recently fired their president Neil Oshey, which could put a lot of their team’s structure into jeopardy.
On top of that, there have been reports that Damian Lillard wants to play with Ben Simmons. Any fans of the Blazers will hope that things will settle down, but it will take a lot of progress from the franchise on all fronts to make that possible.