Portland Trail Blazers: Season is Young, But Defense is a Problem

By Ryan Heckman
Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

The Portland Trail Blazers have been an explosion of offense through their first two weeks of action. Both LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard have led that attack in a huge way, but why is this team just 2-2 when they’re currently sixth in the NBA in scoring?

There’s no doubt that it’s quite impressive for Lillard and Aldridge to be combining for 48.8 points per game thus far, but the fact that this Blazers team is 25th in the league in points allowed is alarming to say the least.

With an offensive attack like the Blazers have had through the first couple of weeks, they can’t afford to be this bad defensively. They’ve given up more than 100 points in three of four games heading into Friday, and are giving up an average of 105 points per game. The problem here lies with the Blazers also averaging 105 points per game themselves.

In their most recent loss, they had a huge struggle against Dwight Howard and James Harden. The two Houston Rockets stars put up a combined 62 points on the Blazers, going 21-for-31 from the field and an astounding 18-for-22 at the line.

Now, I know you’re saying, “Hey, this is the Rockets we’re talking about.” I get it, they’re a pretty potent team. But, this Blazers squad also opened up the season by giving up a combined 48 points to Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe in a 104-91 loss to the Phoenix Suns. If you think you’re a playoff team and allow that to happen, you’re dead wrong.

The Blazers will absolutely not contend for a playoff spot at this rate. I’m not quite sure what they’ve got up their sleeves to fix the issue, but they won’t be able to shoot their way to many victories come crunch time, especially against such great competition in the West. They’ve got to get their defensive woes under control immediately.

Ryan Heckman is a Senior Writer for RantSports.comFollow him on Twitter  @ryanmheckman, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.



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