Player News - Trail Blazers

Date: Team: Pos:

Festus Ezeli had his left knee injected with a bone marrow aspirate concentrate on Tuesday, and he will be sidelined for the next six weeks.

While Ezeli has plenty of time to get himself ready for the start of the 2016-17 season, this report is a bit concerning as Ezeli's knees have been a problem throughout his career, and this is the same knee that required arthroscopic surgery back in February. We currently have Ezeli penciled in as the third-string center in Portland, and it's going to be tough for him to change that, particularly if he's forced to spend the beginning of training camp on the sidelines. He's off the radar in most leagues.
Source: NBA.com
Aug 23 - 5:01 PM

Coby Karl has been named the head coach of the Los Angeles D-Fenders of the D-League.

Karl had been an assistant with Westchester and will now get his shot behind the bench for the D-Fenders.
Aug 18 - 12:17 PM

Pierre Jackson was part of the Lakers free agent minicamp on Wednesday.

Jackson played with the Trail Blazers in Vegas Summer League, but is looking to hook on where he can. While Jackson has some upside, he's yet to log a minute of NBA action and shouldn't be on any draft lists.
Source: NBA.com
Aug 18 - 9:40 AM

The Trail Blazers have signed Grant Jerrett to a training camp deal, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical.

Jerrett was most recently waived by the Jazz last fall and will face an uphill battle to make the Blazers final roster. Even if he's able to make the team, Jerrett won't have any fantasy value in 2016-17.
Aug 16 - 11:49 AM

C.J. McCollum said he wants to improve on the defensive end this season.

"I’m working with our assistant coaches, continuing to work on defense," McCollum said. "I’m building more lower-body strength and core strength, continuing to gain more athleticism in order to help me on the defensive side of the ball." He also said he's trying to improve his lateral quickness, so it's good to see that he's not taking any time off despite signing a four-year, $106 million extension this summer. He won't be cheap in fantasy drafts after returning top-45 value in standard leagues last season.
Aug 8 - 12:25 PM

C.J. McCollum pledged to keep his underdog mindset and to work even harder now that he's become the Trail Blazers' newest $100 million man.

"The biggest thing is just continuing to strive for greatness. I think that's kind of my mindset. I want to continue to get better. I know there's a lot of areas I can improve on..." McCollum said. "The pressure is going to increase and I look forward to the challenge of continuing to represent my last name to the best of my ability." McCollum was a breakout star last season, finishing as a top-45 player in standard leagues. He is expected to post similarly impressive stats next season.
Aug 6 - 10:51 AM

Noah Vonleh said he understands that the competition for playing time will be tougher this season.

"It's going to be real competitive," Vonleh said. "It's going to be a different year. If you're not ready to go, you're not going to play." Blazers coach Terry Stotts said that it was a "priority" to find minutes for Vonleh last season which explains why he started 56 games, but Stotts hinted that winning will be the top priority moving forward. The Blazers could shift Al-Farouq Aminu to power forward, while guys like Moe Harkless, Meyers Leonard and Ed Davis will be in the mix as well. Needless to say, Vonleh's outlook doesn't look great.
Source: NBA.com
Aug 5 - 9:55 AM

Al-Farouq Aminu will not play in the Olympics for Nigeria.

He said he won't participate "due to continued and unresolved organizational challenges with the Nigerian Basketball Federation." He did say he that he hopes to play for Nigeria again in the future, so hopefully the two sides work things out. Aminu is expected to play more power forward next season after the Blazers signed Evan Turner and Allen Crabbe, so his value will likely take a hit considering he will be competing with Moe Harkless and Meyers Leonard.
Aug 1 - 9:27 AM

Meyers Leonard (shoulder surgery) doesn't think that he was overpaid in free agency.

"Market value is what it is," Leonard said. "All I care about is that I know I'm playing to my fullest potential for my coaches to my teammates, that people believe in that... back to the four years and $41 million, I'd look at them like they're crazy if they say it wasn't enough. I mean, dear God, look at where I come from." He's hoping his shoulder is ready around the start of the season and will try to bounce back after a tough 2015-16 campaign. Unfortunately, things won't be any easier for him this season as he competes with Moe Harkless, Al-Farouq Aminu and Noah Vonleh for minutes.
Jul 28 - 12:17 PM

The Blazers have officially signed Moe Harkless.

The deal is reportedly for four years and $40 million. "Moe is an impact player with a bright future and a high upside," president of basketball operations Neil Olshey said. He was limited to minutes in the teens for the majority of the season, but broke though in April with averages of 11.8 points, 6.5 boards, 1.2 assists, 1.0 blocks, 1.2 steals and 1.0 3-pointers in 28.7 minutes per game. The Blazers are loaded up front, so he will be competing for minutes with Al-Farouq Aminu, Meyers Leonard and Noah Vonleh.
Source: NBA.com
Jul 28 - 9:42 AM

C.J. McCollum vowed to keep playing to his fullest potential when his big money deal kicks in during the 2017-18 season.

"I stay paranoid," said McCollum. "That’s the thing that got me to this point is being paranoid, playing with a chip on your shoulder understanding that it’s more than just money, it’s more than just playing for a starting spot. You’re playing for your last name." McCollum will earn just $3.2 million this upcoming season, but that number will skyrocket to roughly $26.5 million in 2018. We're confident McCollum will continue to leave everything on the floor, and he'll make for a fine early-round selection on draft day.
Jul 27 - 12:18 PM

Moe Harkless has reportedly agreed to re-sign with the Trail Blazers on a four-year deal in the $40 million range.

Harkless had some bright moments when he was moved into the starting lineup during the 2015-16 season, putting in averages of 11.9 points, 6.6 boards, 1.2 steals and 1.0 block through 14 games as a starter, and it'll be interesting to see what kind of role he earns with the Blazers during his second year in Portland. He does have a lot of competition for minutes with Al-Farouq Aminu, Meyers Leonard and Noah Vonleh, but after starting every game for Portland during the post-season, he'll make for an intriguing late-round gamble in deep leagues.
Jul 26 - 4:42 PM

C.J. McCollum and the Trail Blazers have reached agreement on a four-year, $106M contract extension, sources told Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical.

Portland has made some questionable moves this offseason, but this certainly is not one of them. McCollum, who will be just 25 in September, averaged career-high marks across the board in what can only be described as a breakout 2015-16 season. Now, there will be no questioning what his future looks like with the Blazers, and the team will push forward in its rebuild with McCollum and Damian Lillard at the helm. McCollum, who averaged 20.8 points, 2.5 3PM and 1.2 steals on 44.8 percent shooting last season, could be in line to improve upon those numbers in his second full go-around as the unquestioned starting shooting guard. Per Wojnarowski, the deal will not include any options or trade kickers.
Jul 25 - 1:09 PM

Undrafted rookie Tim Quarterman has agreed to a two-year, partially guaranteed deal with the Trail Blazers, sources told Shams Charania of The Vertical.

The LSU product is likely just a training camp body.
Jul 25 - 12:58 PM

Meyers Leonard (shoulder surgery) said he will be re-evaluated on August 1.

He recently said that he's hoping to be ready in time for the start of the season, but his timetable will likely be updated after his checkup. Leoard did admit that he will be cautious with his return, which makes sense because he just signed a four-year, $41 million deal. Unfortunately for Leonard, minutes won't be easy to find in Portland's frontcourt next season, especially if they re-sign Moe Harkless as well.
Source: NBA.com
Jul 24 - 9:35 AM


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