Culture Fail—Will the Trailblazers ever get it right? Guest Writer Cristina Himka

As Oregonians, I am sure most of remember the 1984 draft where the Portland Trailblazers missed their opportunity to have the NBA’s all-time points per game leader Michael Jordan as their shooting guard. Of course, looking back, it was hard to know what the future had in store for Michael Jordan or the player the Trailblazers chose, Sam Bowie. Unfortunately, Sam Bowie proved to be a bad choice after he broke his leg and had lingering leg problems after. Bowie only scored an average of 7 points per game meanwhile Michael Jordan had an average of 30 points per game, won 6 NBA championships, and was the MVP for the finals all six times his team won.

Granted, these two players are not the same position. The Trailblazers chose Sam Bowie because he was a center and that was the position that needed filling. However, if the management had been more open-minded, they would have realized that drafting Michael Jordan would have made the team stronger and they could have found someone else from another team to bring in to be the center they needed.


So, okay, let’s forgive the Trailblazers about Jordan. Although, didn’t we just pass on Kevin Durant as well? Kevin Durant was part of the 2007 NBA draft and the Trailblazers passed on him for Greg Oden. Greg Oden was a great player, but no one ever could have predicted that he had bad knees and would be continuously put on the sidelines for injuries. On the other hand, Durant is now part of the 2012 Olympic USA basketball team alongside LeBron James and Kobe Bryant—together making up the closest team to the original “Dream Team” consisting of Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, and Charles Barkley just to name a few.


So let’s recap. The Portland Trailblazers, a team that has not won the NBA championship since 1977 and hasn’t been to the finals since 2003, could have had two of the greatest players in basketball history. Instead we got Greg Oden and Sam Bowie, whose combined career points are 6,337 whereas Kevin Durant has already scored 9978 points in the five years he has played and Michael Jordan totaled 32292 points in his basketball career.


Perhaps we can blame this on a curse; the Trailblazers have an omen that will forever keep them picking the wrong player. Though, maybe it’s about time that the coaches and management start to realize that their first choice instinct isn’t always correct. Let’s rebuild Blazermania and go with the not so obvious choice next time, boys.


By Cristina Himka



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1 thought on “Culture Fail—Will the Trailblazers ever get it right? Guest Writer Cristina Himka

  1. Could of had, should of had. I’m tired of hearing that. And with your headline of “Will the Trailblazers ever get it right?” You made no mention of their number 6 pick this draft, point guard Damian Lillard, and the question of ‘was he the right pick?’ Of course we wont know till the season starts, but with his performance in college, and the summer league, and his attitude toward basketball, I’d go so far as to say he was the right pick. Sure he wont be a star right out of the gate, but he does have the potential to snag the rookie of the year award, and he has major promise to be an All-Star caliber player in the next couple years. You also made no mention of their new GM, who is doing his best to rebuild the team around their All-Star Power Forward LaMarcus Aldridge. Its a young team this season. They may not make the playoffs, but I feel they will have a better season than last year. I’d say it’s an exciting time to be a Blazer fan and in no way should this be a CultureFAIL.
    Ok, I’m done.I will leave you with these questions: Do you even like the Blazers? Are you a fair weather fan? Who would you have picked instead?

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