Meyers Leonard Should Be Confined To Backup Role For Portland Trail Blazers

By John Raffel
Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

It appears now that Meyers Leonard is going to assume the same role he had last season with the Portland Trail Blazers: back-up center.

With Robin Lopez coming to town, Leonard is likely to continue to learn and develop in his position while being a backup. He got a lot of playing minutes last season especially as some of the other players were struggling with injuries.

Leonard had a promising season with 5.5 points and 3.7 rebounds a game. He showed coolness under pressure and continues to give Portland coaches a good feeling about his future potential. He could eventually become an elite player.

He shot extremely well for a big guy, considering he was 54.5 percent from the floor and 42.9 percent from the three-point line. Those are extremely fine percentages. He definitely has a bright future in the NBA and the Blazers know it. It’s a matter of developing him into a quality NBA player over time and not rushing it.

The Blazers need to blend in enough veterans with the younger players to make this a team that is consistent during an 82-game schedule. The 13-game losing streak to end the regular season is still fresh in everyone’s mind. Portland has several rookies and second-year players, including Rookie of the Year Damian Lillard, who are giving this team a bright outlook. Leonard is among those promising stars. But if the Blazers bring him along gradually and don’t expect too much at one time, he’s likely to develop into an excellent NBA player. It’s a matter of time, obviously.

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