Jusuf Nurkic only suited up in 20 games after being traded to Portland last season, long enough for him to determine that the Blazers’ team defense is “trash.”
The big fella vows that his squad will be better at locking up the opposition in 2017-18.
— Bryan M. Vance (@BryanMVance) October 12, 2017
Nurkic shed 34 pounds this summer, and says the Blazers need to adopt a “Bad Boys” motto.
Per the AP:
“All we can do is put all we can together and be Bad Boys,” the 7-footer known as the Bosnian Beast said. “I mean, we are Bad Boys. When you come to Portland you know you’re not going to have wins easy.”
Nurkic believes the key to the Blazers’ success this season is defense.
“Our defense was trash, to be honest, before,” he said. “We’re going to be better. When I came it was better and we’re going to keep improving that. It’s simple: If you want to win, you need to play defense.”
And he’s correct, last season Portland struggled at times defensively. Although the D improved after Nurkic arrived, the Blazers finished 25th in the league for average points allowed.