Tuesday, September 6th, 2011 at 11:52 am  |  25 responses

Felton Excited to be in Portland

Raymond Felton on playing for Blazers and overseas plans.

by Chris Haynes / @ChrisBhaynes

After a tale of two halves last season, the new floor general of the Portland Trail Blazers, Raymond Felton, is eager to prove to the franchise that he hasn’t fallen off.

“I’m extremely excited to have the opportunity to play for the Blazers,” Felton told SLAMonline. “Our roster is set up to make a deep run in the Playoffs, and I can’t wait to get started.”

Felton says he’s in great shape and is working out daily as if the NBA season is scheduled to open on time. He’s also excited to work with coach Nate McMillan as well. McMillan being a former point guard, entices Felton and he feels it would make for a smooth transition as he hopes to orchestrate the Blazers’ offense in the near future.

“He’s ready to get to Portland and pick up where he left off in New York,” said Felton’s co-agent Colin Bryant of Dutt Sports Services Inc. “Raymond is a natural born leader who plays with a chip on his shoulder every night and this should bode well for Portland.”

It may be a while before we see Felton suited up in a Blazers’ uniform as the NBA and player’s union continue to hash out their differences on a new collective bargaining agreement. Sides met last Wednesday without a leak of where things stand between the two.

One thing’s for sure, new CBA or no CBA, Felton will play somewhere.

“He will not sit out a full year of basketball,” Bryant said. “He loves the game too much to take a full season off.”

Bryant says that playing overseas would be a last resort for Felton, but made it clear that if the CBA wasn’t sorted out in a desirable time-frame, they’ll evaluate all of their options when that time comes. As of now, it’s a wait-and-see approach as it retains to the Blazers’ point guard balling outside the borders.

Tony Dutt, president of Dutt Sports Services Inc., has been in close contact with Felton over the weekend informing him on the latest happenings with the CBA negotiations. David Stern’s Labor Day deadline is upon us and Dutt is making sure his client is educated on the path at hand.

Felton was playing the best ball of his pro career under Mike D’Antoni’s up-tempo offense in New York last season. He posted career high marks averaging 17.1 points per game, 9.0 assists and 1.8 steals. He was arguably the best point guard in the League for the first two months of the season.

All was good until the Carmelo Anthony deal transpired and Felton found his way in Denver under a different set of circumstances.

George Karl clearly favored Ty Lawson running the show and Felton found himself being the odd man out. The Blazers saw a rare opportunity to rescue a top-flight NBA point guard in his prime—something Nate McMillan has been dying for.

The Blazers would ship Andre Miller in exchange for Felton on draft day in hopes that he could return to his All-Star level of play.

Felton may, or may not be the answer, but he’s without a doubt, an upgrade at the position. As long as injuries are kept at a minimum, the sky’s the limit for the Blazers.

“Portland has a strong roster and I believe Raymond can be that missing piece to their championship puzzle,” Bryant said.

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  • slamfan4life

    gonna be a dope squad

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zFYwueh05mM nbk

    Raymond Felton’s agent and mother are the only people on earth that thinks he is the missing piece in a championship puzzle

  • http://www.twitter.com/dfrance21 dfrance21

    Last August Felton was primed to help jump-start the NY Knicks resurgence. What a difference a year makes.

  • http://www.google.com/news BETCATS

    Wallace and Felton reunited combined with Aldrige, Brandon Roy, and Wes Matthews. I like it.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    I don’t know. This Blazers team could be the best we’ve seen in many years. Imagine a healthy Blazers team. How far could they go? Felton starting point, Roy running the 2 spot, Gerald Wallace/SF, LA/PF, Oden in the middle. Off the bench you have, Wesley Matthews, Nicholas Batum, Marcus Camby. I would not at all be surprised to see them top 4, or 5 out WEST.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zFYwueh05mM nbk

    Yeah I got them finishing top 5 as of right now, just can’t see them winning a championship at any point with 3 players making over 10 Million a year (Aldridge, Roy, Wallace) and only one of them being offensively “elite” — They also have 4 other players that are either overpaid, or will be overpaid once the new CBA takes effect (Camby $9M, Oden(FA-Portland said they were going to offer him market value) about $8M, Felton $7.5M, Mathews $6.5M) The only “bargain” player on the roster in Nicolas Batum. How many teams win championships, or even become contenders when their roster is bogged down by high-priced role players?

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Yeah wasn’t really looking at all the money involved. Unfortunate, because this team could make some noise. I think they are as good as The Thunder when they are all there. They can also be a great defensive team. IMO 3 Players on the team are Elite at their positions (Not just offensively but overall) when they are healthy(big IF). Roy, LA, (I know i’m not allowed to say this because he has never played 1 good game in his career, but with how weak the Center spot is right now a healthy) Oden. 3 possible All-Stars under the right circumstances. With Wallace and Felton rounding out your starting lineup that is a not a bad team at all.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Oden is elite, per minute. It’s just hard to get a minute. I agree if they were healthy they qould be the Thunder’s competition but Roy even said he’ll never be healthy again. So until Portland starts treating their players with less loyalty (almost never hear that about sports franchises) I dont see them getting past the occasional 2nd round.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Hmm, interesting assessment. Your right. Although I would not at all be shocked to see them in the West Finals. I’m not counting on it or willing to bet on it (cause like you said even Roy himself isn’t to positive), but it would not in anyway surprise me if they beat LA, DAL, or OKC. If Oden is truly healthy (which I don’t think will happen) he will easily put up 12,10,3. If he is back with a vengence, more like 15,12,4.

  • seriousblack

    They let Haynes write again? Smh

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    I’ll say this, its more likely Oden gets to that elite level then Roy. And if Oden gets as good as he can (hes only 23) they will be a contender every year. I mean we all doubt it, but it’s not inconceivable

  • http://www.triplejunearthed.com/dacre Dacre

    Am I the only one that feels the chip on Andre Millers shoulder is bigger than Raymon Felton’s….??
    Andre Miller > Ray Felton.

    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
    Am I going to need to do one of my amazing PG ranked lists?

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    I actually haVe miller as better as well Dac – i dont think felton evem makes them better

  • Overtime

    At which point was Felton the best point guard in the league??

  • http://itsahardwoodlife.blogspot.com omphalos

    “arguably the best point guard in the League”. That’s a pretty one-sided argument between him and Chris Paul.

  • MikeC.

    @omphalos – Felton did play very well over the first 2 months of the season. As for being “arguably the best point guard in the League” over that time frame, it had just as much to do with the elite PGs either playing poorly or easing back from injuries as it did Felton playing very well.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Max

    Dre is better than Felton.
    Blazers almost always had an advantage at the PG spot inside, because Dre could post up anyone, and now that advantage is gone.

  • L

    The Blazers should be really fun to watch.They are still a healthy Oden and Roy away from contention..L

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zFYwueh05mM nbk

    at no point ever, not even for 1 day, was Felton the best PG in the league.

  • axxx

    rondo started the season averaging, what, 17apg?

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Ya’ll are to hard on Felton lol. Kids better than your giving him credit for. Passes the ball well. He’s quick. He’s strong. Improved outside shooting. Tries real hard on D. IMO (as we have discussed before) Felton > Miller next year. Not better at everything. Not better career, but better for Portland next year than Miller would be.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zFYwueh05mM nbk

    we’ll see. He shoots a lot of errant shots, not something that normally meshes well with the slowest team in the league.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    He didn’t really when he was with the Bobcats. He also wasn’t as good then. I think the D’antoni Offense probably made him think he was Billips, and the with Denver he was basically coming off the bench just trying to get some shots up. I think with McMillan as his coach he might be a real nice fit with the team. I don’t see him taking numerous stupid shots. McMillan won’t stand for that. Why do you think he didn’t like Rudy… I’d take Miller on the Lakers over Felton next year, but I just think that Portland is going to be a nice fit for him. Time will tell.

  • http://www.fullc0urtpress.com KHoliday

    Raymond Felton is a solid NBA guard… Is he the missing piece to a championship puzzle? It’s possible, but not in Portland. Too many broken pieces in this puzzle already (i.e, Oden, Roy) to make sense of this picture. Sorry Portland!

  • Ebo212

    Ray finished last year even after being traded: 6th in league in assists, 6th in the league in double doubles among guards, 10th in league in steals. Had he stayed in New York, these numbers would have been higher. He plays stellar defense and he is a leader. He is durable and has missed only a few games over his 6 yr career. Sometimes he does take bad shots and will make mistakes, but I would say he is a top ten point guard and the Portland Trailblazers will be a much better team because of him. I like Andre, but Felton will be a beast in Portland.