The radio voice of the Blazers Brian Wheeler joined Brian Berger to talk about Nic Batum, Blazer rookies, and the Blazers' coaching search.
Brian first asked Wheels about the recent signing of Nic Batum. Wheels talks about how the Blazers signed Batum based on his potential of what he could be. Wheels also says that the Blazers have to make sure that Batum doesn’t feel pressure to live up to the massive deal, but to just play his game and help the Blazers get better. Wheels describes the Blazers offense this season as an open court offense which will help Batum utilize his talents better.
Brian and Wheels then talk about the new rookies joining Portland through the draft and through past draftees that recently signed (Joel Freeland and Victor Claver). He says that Freeland will probably play more than Claver based on his seasoning in the Euro League and Olympics. He talks about Freeland’s game and that he has a great skill set but will have to adjust to the NBA game which is different than European game in terms of speed and skill. Wheels mentions how the Blazers will start Damian Lillard at point guard and how the Blazers will sign another point guard to help shave minutes from Lillard. In addition, Wheels believes the Blazers need another center so that Meyers Leonard doesn’t have to start as he thinks that playing him wouldn’t be what the Blazers want. The Blazers lost out on Roy Hibbert so he suggests looking for another veteran to play there, play J.J. Hickson at center, or bring back Joel Przyzbilla.
Brian then asks Wheels about the long coaching saga that has been going on for months now, and when it will end. Wheels says that he thinks and believes that the coaching situation will be finished by August as the new coach has to get his staff in place and meet with the team before practices in the fall. Wheels believes the coach will be a teaching coach as the Blazers are a young team. Furthermore, he thinks that Kaleb Canales will be a part of the staff as well.
The entire interview is below as Wheels and Brian also talk about the Summer League and LaMarcus Aldridge.