The Portland Trail Blazers are feeling good about some of the new players they’ve got like C.J. McCollum and also some of the performer that are coming back like Damian Lillard.
Regardless, Will Barton hopes no one is forgetting him.
Barton was the overlooked NBA Rookie of the Year of sorts for Portland last season. It’s not that he put up great numbers but he did do some things that should draw the Blazers’ attention before they look the other way.
If coach Terry Stotts wants to take a team that was 33-49 and put them back onto the playoffs, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to consider more playing time for Barton. He showed last season that he has tons of untapped potential.
All Stotts has to do is look at the playing time he gave Barton last season when the Blazers were running short on numbers and the rookie took advantage. For the season, he saw action in 73 games and got five starts to average 4.0 points, 2.0 rebounds and 0.8 assists per game
In Barton’s last three games, he showed he can deliver. In the final game of the regular season against the Golden State Warriors, Barton was 7-of-19 from the floor, 1-of-2 in threes grabbed six rebounds and had four assists. It almost looked like Barton, not Lillard, was going for Rookie of the Year honors.
If there would be such a thing as second-year NBA player of the year, perhaps Barton could compete for that. If the Blazers use him right, he could have a sensational season.