The Portland Trail Blazers are coming off a disappointing season last year.
The Blazers finished with a record of 27-55 and were one of the worst teams in the NBA.
A big reason for that was a significant injury to Damian Lillard that cost him 53 games.
This season the Blazers got off to a fast start with a record of 5-2.
Health is the only thing standing in the way of the Blazers returning to the playoffs.
Here are three reasons to watch the Trail Blazers this season.
1. The Return Of Damian Lillard
The best player on the Trail Blazer is point guard Damian Lillard.
The health of Lillard is something to keep an eye on this season in Portland.
If he remains healthy, they have a chance to compete in the West.
If not, they will be looking at the play-in game at best.
The problem is Lillard is already hurt.
He suffered a calf injury last week and will not be re-evaluated for another week or two.
On the season, Lillard has played he averaged 31.0 points per game.
The Blazers need that in lineup if they want to have success.
2. The Next Great Blazer?
Lillard is a great player and arguably the best in Trail Blazers history.
But, there is a younger player who has a chance to be special.
That is 23-year-old guard Anfernee Simons.
So far this season Simons is averaging 22.0 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 3.9 assists per game.
Anfernee Simons has seven three-pointers…IN THE FIRST HALF 🤯pic.twitter.com/8DYnRynVBS
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) October 29, 2022
Simons was very effective last year in the time that Lillard missed.
Now the fifth-year player is looking to take his game to another level this year.
3. Do They Have Any Bench Depth?
The best teams in the NBA each year are the ones with the most depth.
Having players that can succeed off the bench is crucial to any NBA team.
The Blazers need to get production from their bench this season.
Names like Justise Winslow, Shaedon Sharpe, and Nassir Little are getting the most minutes off the bench.
Shaedon Sharpe is special…
— Damian Lillard (@Dame_Lillard) October 29, 2022
But, none of those players is proven in the NBA.
Getting quality minutes from their bench will be a crucial part of the Blazers’ season.