LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, as I'm writing this, the Portland Trail Blazers basketball club is 4-4. Out of 82 games this season, they've won four and lost four. This is actually better than most reasonable people expected at this point. Most sports fans aren't reasonable people. However, most sports fans are the kind of people who think muting commercials helps their team win. Most sports fans are the kind of people who think Greg Oden's huge penis contributed to his knee injury (like it was rocking back and forth like a pendulum, and through a series of penis-on-knee micro aggressions, slowly weakened his cartilage to the point of unsustainability... and yes, I might be the only person who has this theory, but it's my column, so whatever). Most sports fans—most BLAZER fans—probably thought this team was very capable of being 4-4, and there's probably a significant group who see 4-4 as some kind of disappointment... which is dumb, but fun, because it means we have ourselves a debate.
AT QUESTION, DEAR READER WHO KEPT READING EVEN THOUGH I SPENT AN ENTIRE ASIDE ON GREG ODEN'S PENIS BEING RESPONSIBLE FOR HIS KNEE PROBLEM, WHOOPS I DID IT AGAIN: Are the Blazers good, and more importantly, do we want them to be good? There are certainly good Blazers. Damian Lillard is looking like one of the best players in the league. In terms of his offensive ability, he's a slightly-less-good Steph Curry. If Curry is Optimus Prime, Lillard is like whichever Gobot was supposed to be Optimus Prime. This is a compliment.
CJ McCollum is healthy for the first time in his career and scoring like a... like, uh... like someone who has sex a lot. The combination of the two is truly a sight to behold. Either one of these Blazers could shoot a three at any moment, meaning they're always a threat. CJ or Dame might burst into your bedroom while you're sleeping, and toss your nightstand lamp in from behind an ancient three-point line you didn't know your apartment was built upon.
Al-Farouq Aminu tries super hard on defense and plays like Nic Batum sleeps in a kiddie pool full of Monster Energy Drink. The white guys seem nice. There are a lot of fun pieces there, they play well together, but where does this team max out? At 41-41? Barely making the playoffs? Probably, yeah. That's probably their ceiling, and if you're someone who looks only at the future, that's a bummer. That's a team that will probably stay at 41-41 for the next seven years. But if you're someone who goes to work so they can go to games, if you're someone who's chewed a hole in a throw pillow watching an away game in Milwaukee in November, if you're someone who's almost crashed their car refreshing Meyers Leonard's box score on their phone because he hasn't been tweeting as much and you're worried he's depressed... then those 41 wins are worth another six years of 41 wins.
Mediocre on, Blazers. You're all I have. @IanKarmel