Thursday, July 5, 2012

Former Husky and Blazer Brandon Roy signs with T-Wolves

By Kshell

Former Portland Trail Blazers and Washington Huskies great Brandon Roy is coming out of retirement. Roy has signed a two year deal worth over 10 million dollars to play with the Minnesota Timberwolves the team who actually drafted him in 2006.  For Roy he is hoping to make a splash in the NBA once again like he did with the Blazers. Roy who won the rookie of the year in the 2006-07 season, is a former three-time all-star and has been  all-NBA twice in his career. Roy is going to an upstart Timberwolves team who features good young starts such as Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio. Roy if he returns to form or close to it can lead the Timberwolves to the playoffs. Roy who is averaging 19.0 PPG, 4.7 APG, 4.3 RPG and a full steal a game in his career. However, there is a risk as Roy missed all of last season due to retirement. Roy is a model face for the northwest athletes and there will be plenty of people in Seattle and Portland curious to how he does in his new home. Roy has achieved a lot in his basketball career and some are probably pondering why he is even coming back? Roy has plenty left in the tank and if he is healthy has a ton to offer to a franchise. The Timberwolves haven't made the playoffs since 2004 so hopefully Roy can turn it around for them like he did the Washington Huskies and Portland Trail Blazers.

Brandon Roy is a local product from Garfield High School. As a four-star recruit he chose the Washington Huskies over the Arizona Wildcats. He was the first big time recruit the Huskies landed. For the Huskies Roy led them to the NCAA tournament three times. Roy was honorable mention all Pac-10 as a sophomore and junior when he averaged 12 points a game and five rebounds. He was injured his junior year which was a blessing in disguise as he returned for his senior season. During his senior year for the Huskies he was named first team all-american and Pac-10 player of the year as the Huskies advanced to the sweet 16 for the second straight year. Roy averaged 20.2 PPG, 5.6 RPG and 4.1 APG. He also chipped in with 0.8 blocks per game and 1.6 steals per game. He shot 50.8% from the field, 40.2% from three point range and made 81.0% of his free throws. After a successful four year career which made him the greatest player in the Lorenzo Romar era still he was then the face of the Washington Huskies. Roy has his number retired for the Huskies as he is the only Romar player to make an NBA all-star game, the only Husky in the Romar era to be named first team all-american and conference player of the year. All that was special as Roy became the 6th pick overall in the NBA draft by the Minnesota Timberwolves the team he has agreed to play with now.

The Blazers traded the draft rights of Randy Foye to the Timberwolves for the Washington superstar in Roy. Roy rewarded the Blazers by winning Rookie of the Year.  Roy won the rookie of the year when he averaged 16.8 PPG, 4.4 RPG and 4.0 APG. He shot 45.6% from the field while making almost a full three pointer a game. More importantly the Blazers had a "Jail Blazers" image before Roy showed up with the Blazers. Roy made the Blazers winners and during the 2007-08 season his second year in the NBA Roy had made the NBA all-star team as he led the Western Conference in scoring with 18 points on 8-10 shooting in that game. Roy and the Blazers were the new up and coming franchise as Greg Oden was set to make his debut in the 2008-09 season and LaMarcus Aldridge was still developing who was also picked in the same draft with Roy. Roy also was the first Washington Huskies player to win the rookie of the year award. Roy proved the Blazers traded for the steal of the draft as he still is to this date the highest Huskies player picked in the NBA draft in the Romar era. Roy more importantly was poised for a big year for the Blazers in the next two seasons especially during the 2008-09 campaign which most figured the Blazers would use that great season as a launching season for more great things. Come to find out the 2008-09 campaign was the height of Roy's Blazers run with the franchise.

During Roy's third season the Blazers finally returned to the playoffs as Roy made his second straight all-star team and was named second team all NBA that year. During the 2008-09 season Roy averaged 22.6 PPG, 4.7 RPG and 5.1 APG. He shot 48.0% from the field, made a little over a three pointer a game shooting 37.7% while making 82.4% of his free throws. In the playoffs against the Houston Rockets the Blazers lost in six games but it wasn't Roy's fault as he had a terrific series. During that six game loss Roy averaged 26.7 PPG, 4.8 RPG and 2.8 APG. He also shot 45.9% from the field, 87.0% from free throws and 47.1% from three point range. Roy was rewarded with a 7 year 84 million dollar deal after that season.  Roy was enjoying another all-star season in 2009-10 where he was named third team all-NBA until he injured one of his knee's forcing him to miss the final 17 games of the season. Roy then missed the Blazers first three playoff games against the Phoenix Suns. As the Blazers trailed the Suns 2-1 in the series they pressed the panic button deciding to play Roy. Roy provided great inspiration as the Blazers beat the Suns in game four to even the series at two games apiece. The Suns would eliminate the Blazers in six games that year as Roy probably should have sat out that series. After that Roy was never quite the same with the Blazers although he provided a great moment in that Blazers comeback win over the Mavericks in game four of the 2011 NBA playoffs.

In short, Roy is going to a division rival which will feel strange when he returns back to the Rose Garden. I expect the Blazers fans to give him a standing ovation as he gave the Blazers everything even sacrificing his own knees. Roy was a class act for the Blazers and their franchise didn't make the playoffs before him and immediately after he retired they missed the playoffs again. Roy is given a second chance for his career and with sitting out that year possibly he can return to his old form. This is a risky contract for the Timberwolves but if Roy resembles anything that he once was this is a bargain deal. Now for fans of the northwest we can finally see our homegrown superstar once again play in the NBA. It doesn't matter if Roy ever makes an all-star game again I'm just happy that is going to go out on his own terms instead of retiring too soon like we had all feared last year.


  1. I guess that if it's a great move for Huskie fans who hate the Blazers. I'm neither, but I do like Roy and wishh him the best of luck.

  2. I don't think too many Huskies fans hate the Blazers. We may have liked the Sonics more but the Sonics-Blazers were never good at the same time other than 1978. That was more of a friendly rivalry if anything.