Stotts to Improve Blazers Young Players
(Terry) Stotts said he hopes to make the playoffs, but his main objective is to make sure the young players are better in April than October.
Known as an innovator on offense, he plans to speed up the Trail Blazers’ often-stagnant pace and emphasize the extra pass and the 3-point shot.
“Obviously, LaMarcus Aldridge is a stud,” Stotts said about the All-Star forward. “Hopefully I’ll be able to use him in a lot of similar ways that we used Dirk Nowitzki.”
Rookie Damian Lillard, the sixth overall pick in the draft, is expected to start at point guard after his good showing in the Las Vegas summer league. Stotts said the rookie will provide the team with a pick-and-roll game it has lacked.
Other young players include 7-foot-1 Meyers Leonard, the 11th overall pick in the draft; guard Elliot Williams, who had flashes of brilliance before a shoulder injury ended his season; and a pair of new imports — forward Joel Freeland of Britain and swingman Victor Claver of Spain.