It’s baaaaack! Trail Blazer season tips off tonight in Vancouver
A quick look back at the 2017-18 season
Portland finished last season third in the Western Conference after going 49-33. The Trail Blazers then got swept by the New Orleans Pelicans in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs.
As for the Raptors, Toronto had a disappointing finish to the season (getting swept by Cleveland in the Eastern Conference FInals) after finishing first in the Eastern with a regular season record of 59-23.
By the end of free agency, the Blazers parted ways with Ed Davis, Shabazz Napier and Pat Connaughton, but retained Jusuf Nurkic, along with Wade Baldwin and Jake Layman.
Portland also drafted 19-year-old Anfernee Simons as the No. 24 pick and 19-year-old Gary Trent Jr. (via trade) with the 37th pick. In free agency, the Blazers signed shot-makers Seth Curry and Nik Stauskas to one-year deals.
The Toronto Raptors offseason started with the firing of head coach Dwane Casey in May. Nick Nurse was named the Raptors new head coach in mid-June.
Toronto made a big splash when they traded away franchise player, DeMar DeRozan, for Spurs All-Star Kawhi Leonard.
Per Blazers PR, small forward Maurice Harkless (knee) is OUT for Saturday’s game.
Harkless underwent arthroscopic surgery to remove a loose body from his knee last March. The 25 year-old participated in roughly one third of the Blazers first practice on Tuesday, but then did not participate at all during Thursday’s practice.
For the Raptors, all eyes are on Kawhi Leonard. The newest addition to the team had a quadriceps injury that kept him out of all but nine games last season with the Spurs.
Leonard went through a 5-on-5 full contact scrimmage on Tuesday. That was the first scrimmage Leonard has had without an issue since January.
Where: Rogers Arena in Vancouver, BC
Television: NBCS Northwest courtesy of MLSE (Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment)
Postgame reaction: Dwight Jaynes will have you covered from Vancouver B.C. You can find the latest from him at NBCSportsNorthwest.com.
Radio: Rip City Radio 620