OK, first off I hope you know that I like Portland, because of Greg Oden (I really want him to get rookie of the year) more then any other team in the west aside from the Rockets if they keep hot Carl Landry and the T-Wolfs because they now have Brian Cardinal. Because the Purdue Boilers are my all time favorite sports organization next to the Colts & the US Olimpic Team (cause that should be every American's fav. team). Secondly I think the Pacers got theIt's hard to say who got the better deal in the JO transaction yet. If TJ Ford stays healthy and Larry cut down on total salaries which get's the team under the cap for Free-Agency in 2 more seasons - the edge goes to the Pacers. Larry Bird should study what Kevin Pritchard is doing and copy it exactly. The Blazers were looking like the Pacers are looking now just a few years ago- lost. Pritchard got rid of Zach Randolph and the team has been getting better ever since. There is no reason Larry Bird shouldn't be able to rebuild the Pacers in the East in a few seasons. Getting rid of JO is a start.
better end of the JO trade, because there's a good chance Ford and O'Neal have been hurt by injuries to the point where there both has beens. And at least the Pacers got the 17th over all pick out of that trade. And on my final note, that was a great move by Portland & Prichet getting rid of Zach Randoff, he was clearly the Jamaal Tinsley of the Portland Trail Blazers. For that reason and the fact that his 13 million dollar contract isn't up for 4 years I think the Knicks are pretty screwed. But then again that's Isiah Thomas for ya, allot of people are blaming this trade he the Pacers made with da Bulls in 2001 when Isiah Thomas was their coach:
SG/F-Jailen Rose & PG-Travis Best to da Bulls for
SG/SF-Ron Artest, C/PF-Brad Miller, & SG/F-Ron Mercer.
for their slump. I personally like Ron Artest or as I like to call him rappin Ron and thought the Pacers screwed up the most when they let Brad Miller go instead of Johnathan Bender.
Next season I look for Portland to be in the playoffs as a contender and possibly the best record in the NBA. But I gotta go with the Rockets as the favorite to win the NBA title.
As for the Pacers, first off I think Bird wants to be under the Cap so he can buy out Jamaal Tinsley's contract and get rid of him since all those trades he made seemed to be 1 guy for like 3. And for that reason I don't think the Pacers will make the playoffs next season. But the season after that I look for the Pacers to make a splash in the free agent market, make the playoffs and be a contender for the title.