Rodney Hood

Rodney Hood undergoes successful surgery to repair torn Achilles

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Rodney Hood undergoes successful surgery to repair torn Achilles

The Portland Trail Blazers announced Wednesday, veteran wing Rodney Hood has undergone successful surgery to repair his ruptured left Achilles tendon.

The surgery was performed by Dr. Richard Ferkel at the Southern California Orthopedic Institute earlier today.

It was on December 6th in the Blazers loss to the Lakers when Hood suffered the injury at the 3:27 mark of the first quarter

As of right now, the Blazers are saying there is no timetable for Hood’s return to basketball activity.

[RELATED]: Fans and NBA players send their love to Rodney Hood 

This season in 21 games, the 27-year-old averaged 11.0 points 3.4 rebounds, and 1.5 assists in 29.5 minutes per game.

Hood was having one of the best seasons of his career.  

His shooting percentage (50.6%), along with his three-point shooting percentage (49.3%) and rebounding average were all career highs.

 

Free agents? Trades? What should the Trail Blazers do down another man?

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Free agents? Trades? What should the Trail Blazers do down another man?

Leaving the Moda Center on Friday night: The rain falling outside, a crispness in the air, and a ponderance of what the Trail Blazers should do now that Rodney Hood is lost for the season.

To say the injury bug has bitten the Portland Trail Blazers would be an understatement.

Portland was already without Jusuf Nurkic (left lower leg) and Pau Gasol (left ankle) to start the season.

Then, the Blazers lose Zach Collins to shoulder surgery.

Then, Gasol and the Blazers decide it would be better for him to focus on his rehabilitation and not be on the Trail Blazers roster anymore.

Then, Gary Trent, Jr. misses extended time with a right hamstring strain.

Then, Rodney Hood goes down with a torn left Achilles tendon during Friday night's game vs. the Lakers.  

So, here we are, the day after Hood suffers a season-ending injury, trying to figure out what will the Blazers do now.

With Gasol’s decision to no longer be a Trail Blazer, that put the roster at 14-players, meaning there is one open roster spot. 

There are a few names that have been floating around as potential good fits for the Blazers.

-Jamal Crawford

-Corey Brewer

-Kevin Love

Crawford has been in a similar boat as Carmelo Anthony. He has been waiting to see if a team will give him another shot or be forced to retire.  The 39-year-old is currently living in Seattle. For his career, he has averaged 14.6 points, 3.4 assist, and 2.2 rebounds.

Crawford played for the Trail Blazers during the 2011-12 lockout shortened season.

Trail Blazers shooting guard, CJ McCollum already voiced his opinion on Crawford last month saying that the 3-time Sixth Man of the Year should be back on the court.

As for Corey Brewer, he last played for the Kings. He appeared in 24 games for Sacramento last season. 

For his career, Brewer has posted averages of 8.7 points on 42.5 percent shooting to go along with his 2.8 rebounds. He can also defend on the perimeter, which is something that is always valuable.

And then... there's Kevin Love.

Trail Blazers fans have been saying for YEARS that Love should come back home.

According to new reports that surfaced Friday, the Cavaliers are now willing to listen to trade offers for Love.

Love has three years and $90 million left on his contract.

The NBA trade possibilities will expand on December 15th when players who signed free-agent contracts this past offseason are eligible to be traded.

The Trail Blazers have a couple of players on expiring contracts and could potentially look to flip one player's bigger contract into two players, effectively filling that 15th spot. In doing so, they wouldn't take on any new money and wouldn't be adversely affected by a tax hit if they were to add a player right now.

With so many injuries, trading one guy for two could be one of the best options for Portland.

OR maybe the Trail Blazers continue with the personnel that is still healthy, having Kent Bazemore start at small forward with Mario Hezonja and Anthony Tolliver getting more minutes off the bench.

Time will tell, but as always we will keep our finger on the pulse as to what the Trail Blazers decide to do moving forward at the forward/wing position. 

The emotions after losing Rodney Hood to a torn Achilles: "There’s no words that can help"

The emotions after losing Rodney Hood to a torn Achilles: "There’s no words that can help"

It seemed like Déjà vu:  The Trail Blazers met their injured teammate in the locker room to offer him a hug, their thoughts and prayers, and to offer support to their comrade.

First, it was Jusuf Nurkic. Then, Zach Collins.

Friday night, with the Los Angeles Lakers in town, the Blazers lost their starting small forward Rodney Hood to a season-ending Achilles injury

“I’m very sad,” Blazers head coach Terry Stotts said following the Blazers 136-113 loss to the Lakers. “Very disappointed for Rodney, he was having a good year for us. I hate for anybody to have an injury like that, that takes them out for the season. I feel for him.” 

Hood suffered what was initially called a lower leg injury with 3:27 in the first quarter. By halftime, the Trail Blazers announced Hood had suffered a torn left Achilles tendon, confirmed by an MRI. 

Hood said after the Blazers win over the Kings on Wednesday that his left Achilles was bothering him during the game and that he wasn’t sure if he would be able to play vs. the Lakers. The 27-year-old was even subbed out in the fourth quarter because of left Achilles soreness.

Friday night, Coach Stotts said Hood cleared all of the team's protocols before the game and there was never a question that Hood wouldn’t play against the Lakers.

As one would expect, the Trail Blazers locker room was somber. They stood at their lockers trying to put into words how difficult it was to watch Hood, one of their brothers, go down the way he did with a non-contact injury.

“It’s tough, man,” Damian Lillard said postgame. “You hate to see injuries in the league period, but you hate to see one of your teammates go down to an injury like that, especially a starter and somebody that’s really a good person, having a great season, fitting in really well with our team and a big part of what we do. You feel for him personally more than anything. Just sad to see that happen to him.”

Hood was averaging 11.5 points on an efficient 50.9 percent shooting from the floor, while shooting 49.3 percent from three this season.

The Trail Blazers team captain is giving Hood space before he talks with him.

“So many emotions come with that and a lot going on in his head, I didn’t want to press him about it. I’m sure we’ll talk. I just told him to keep his head up. I saw where his spirits were – he had a smile on his face even though I know he probably hurting on the inside. I’m sure we’ll talk,” Lillard said.

The Trail Blazers and Lakers were exchanging baskets before Hood headed back to the locker room.

Before losing Hood, Portland already had a difficult task facing the 20-3 Lakers.

Skal Labissiere, who had to leave the game briefly in the first quarter to have four stitches, put in his upper lip, discussed how big of void it was losing Hood.

“Obviously he’s a big part of our team, we felt that when he went down. We hope and wish that he has a really good recovery,” Labissiere said.

For us it’s about the next man up. It’s been like that since the end of last year when [Jusuf] Nurkic went down and even into this season, so we just have to keep staying together. We’ve encountered a lot of adversity already this season and we just have to keep pushing. We have no other choice and perseverance I think is a big word for us… We have a great group of guys. Guys that work hard and we understand the situation, and we’re just going to have to keep having to preserve. -- Skal Labissiere 

Hood held the second-best three-point shooting percentage in the league earlier this season. He exuded confidence and became a go-to guy for the Trail Blazers.

Both CJ McCollum and Carmelo Anthony reflected on Hood’s season so far this year.

“It’s heartbreaking, McCollum said. "I know how hard he worked, the type of season he was having, what he means to our team, you never want to see anything like that… I saw him briefly. I mean, what do you say? I just gave him a hug… There’s no words that can help in that situation."

What he was able to bring to this team early on in the season, how he was playing, playing at a all-time high level, having a career start to the season, and just the snap of a finger his season is gone right now. -- Carmelo Anthony postgame  

Injuries like a torn Achilles always put the game of basketball in perspective.

And that’s what Melo was feeling:

“You forget all about the actual game. You realize how wins and losses really doesn’t mean anything at this particular moment. It puts a lot of things in perspective to lose a guy like that.”

Hood was not in the locker room when the media was allowed in, but right next to Hood’s locker stood young Anfernee Simons. He was one of the first players to talk about losing his teammate.

“You just don’t know what to think… We’re just going to be supporting him and praying for him. We’re going to be there for him every step of the way for his recovery,” Simons said.

Simons also mentioned that he was able to have a brief conversation with his teammate after the game:

“I just told him God always has a plan and just keep the faith, and I’m praying for him.”

As Hood and the Blazers look to keep the faith, they will continue to preserve, and lean on each other.

The first chance the Blazers will have to come together as a team will be Sunday when the Oklahoma City Thunder come to town. 

Fans and NBA players send their love to Rodney Hood

Fans and NBA players send their love to Rodney Hood

The Blazers and NBA fans were dealt a tough blow on Friday when Rodney Hood went down with a leg injury against the Lakers. Hood went up for a rebound, came down awkward, and fell to the floor holding his left leg. He was helped off the court by team trainers and did not return. Blazers fans prepared for the worst but hoped for the best. Unfortunately, the news they got a few minutes later was the worst news possible. Rodney Hood - Torn Achilles. Out for the season. As soon as the news broke players around the NBA tweeted their support to their brother. 

https://twitter.com/JordanClarksons

NBA players weren't the only ones taking to social media. Plenty of fans reacted to the news as well, sending Hood their love:

UPDATE: Rodney Hood has a torn left Achilles tendon

UPDATE: Rodney Hood has a torn left Achilles tendon

What was feared has become a reality.

The Trail Blazers announced starting small forward Rodney Hood suffered a torn left Achilles tendon during Friday night's game vs. the LA Lakers.

The injury came at the 3:27 mark of the first quarter when Hood grabbed a defensive rebound. Hood planted his left foot and immediately fell to the floor. It was a non-contact injury.

Trainers rushed to Hood where he was surrounded by his teammates. He had to be helped off the floor by the team trainers.

The 27-year-old was holding his left lower leg while he was on the floor in serious pain.

Hood said after the win over Sacramento on Wednesday that his left Achilles was bothering him during the game and that he wasn’t sure if he would be able to play vs. the Lakers. Hood was subbed out in the fourth quarter because his left Achilles soreness.

We'll have more from players and coaches after the game.

Adding Carmelo Anthony -- Is it what the Blazers expected?

Adding Carmelo Anthony -- Is it what the Blazers expected?

Last week, Carmelo Anthony averaged 22.3 points on 57.4% shooting from the field, while also shooting 45.5% from three-point range. To add to the efficient shooting, Melo also notched 7.7 rebounds per game and 2.7 assists as the Trail Blazers went 3-0.

Monday afternoon the NBA announced that Anthony had earned the Western Conference Player of the Week honors for the first time since March of 2014.

After the Blazers wrapped up Monday’s practice and before the team made their way down to Los Angeles for a Tuesday night meeting with the Clippers, Portland’s head coach Terry Stotts discussed how he feels Melo has measured up to Stotts' initial outlook on bringing in the 10-time All-Star.    

I don’t know what my expectations were. My expectations probably were that he’d be able to help us. Beyond that he’s probably played more minutes than I expected. He’s kept himself in really good condition, but other than that we all remember the player Melo was before he was out of the league for a year and my hope was that he would be able to come back to that.

As Anthony showcased his offense last week, Damian Lillard still continued his effectiveness on that end of the floor, averaging 22.7 points and 7.7 assists over the last three games.  

Lillard knows one thing is certain: It has been nice to have Melo shouldering some of the offensive load.

“Taking pressure off of us," Lillard said. "I think he’s a guy that regardless of how many years he’s been in the league, or how many miles, or his age, or anything-- it’s a respect thing. When guys see him out there they respect him… His presence has just been a huge difference."

Rodney Hood, who has been shooting a third-best in the league 50.8 percent from three, mentioned that fans really notice Anthony’s scoring, but the veteran forward has brought a lot more than just buckets.  

“He’s helped in a lot of facets,” Hood said. “Obviously, you see the scoring, but rebounding – he’s a competitor rebounder, and we’ve been lacking. You know, Hassan [Whiteside] can get rebounds, but other than that, he’s a really good rebounder. Defensively- he really talks, very vocal – something else we’ve been needing.”

The Blazers are currently riding a three-game winning streak with Anthony now playing in a total of six games as a Blazer. Hood added that Anthony has a “a toughness about him” that the team has also been needing.

Portland has also taken advantage of the 35-year-old’s basketball IQ.

“Everybody knows what he brings to the table and what he’s done in the league, but he’s just a really good basketball mind.  He really knows the game… I think that really helps us out a lot,” Hood said. 

The Blazers will now look to Melo’s skills and smarts as they take on a Clippers team that has won eight of their last nine games. 

Anfernee Simons is learning from his shooting woes, knows it's part of the game

Anfernee Simons is learning from his shooting woes, knows it's part of the game

It was a team effort on Friday night, as the Portland Trail Blazers defeated the Chicago Bulls for the second time in five days. 

But, really it was a group effort by the starters-- at least on offense.

Blazers head coach Terry Stotts made note of that postgame, “from our starters tonight, offensively Rodney (Hood), Melo (Carmelo Anthony), CJ (McCollum), Dame (Damian Lillard), all of them were very good offensively, and then Hassan (Whiteside) was just exceptional in the paint; defense, rebounding, blocking shots. So those five guys played really well, not to say the bench didn’t play well, but those five guys really stood out obviously.”

Portland’s starting five combined to score 98 of the Blazers’ 107 total points on Friday night.

While the Blazers got the win, the Bulls bench outscored Portland’s second unit, 25-9.

But, Blazers back-up guard Anfernee Simons, who scored just one point in the winning effort, believes that he and the other guys coming off the bench were still doing what was asked of them.

“I think we were moving the ball pretty well. We just kind of sticking to what helps us win it. So whatever the second unit has to do to help win, either it’s just move the ball, get good shots, play defense, that’s what we’re going to do,” Simons said.

After starting the month of November shooting 27-of-55 (49.1 percent) through the first five games of the month, while averaging 15.8 points, Simons has cooled off considerably.

In his last 10 games, he is shooting 34.1 percent from the field and 28.6 percent from three, while averaging 8.6 points per game.

Call it a slump, call it a rough shooting patch, call it whatever you like, but for the young second-year player he knows that this is all part of being an NBA player.

“It’s all a learning process. I gotta keep working and keep trying to learn and continue to grow as a player. I think I’ve just got to continue to stay positive and keep wanting to be great, and wanting to be the best player I can be.”

What is his teammates advice during this rough stretch?

Stick with it.

Simons said, “They’re just telling me to keep being aggressive.”

He also acknowledged that he knows going through a rough shooting stretch is part of being an NBA player, especially as such a young player.

“It’s my first real time playing. It’s almost like I’m a rookie playing out there, so obviously I’ve known, I’ve been here, but it’s not the same as playing. So I’m just going to take it game-by-game.”

This season, the Blazers have now hit their 20th game played and Simons has played in every one of them. Last season, as a rookie, Simons played in 20 games TOTAL, averaging just over seven minutes per game.

‘Taking it game-by-game” is something Simons has learned from watching his teammates go through similar situations.  

For a veteran shooter like Rodney Hood, he isn’t worried about Simons and says Simons shouldn’t worry about a slump either.

Everyone goes through it. 

“It’s part of it,” Hood said. “Ant is probably one of the better shooters on this team. We have full confidence in him as an offensive player. He’s doing the little things, which I love. When you’re in a slump, I know I’ve been through slumps, everybody is gonna go through slumps at some point during the season, you’ve got to continue to focus on the other things. He’s been rebounding, he’s been trying to defend, doing other things.”

Hood reiterated that Simons’ teammates aren’t at all concerned about the 20-year-old’s current shooting woes.

“As far as him scoring the ball, we never worry about that with Ant. We’re going to continue to let him grind through it and once he gets back going, he’ll pick up where he left." 

Simons will have a couple of days to get back in the groove as the Blazers don't play until Tuesday in Los Angeles vs. the Clippers. 

Rodney Hood 'locked in' and 'able to contribute even more'

Rodney Hood 'locked in' and 'able to contribute even more'

Mr. Comfortable? What about Mr. Confident? Or, is Mr. Consistent more fitting?

All three names could easily describe Trail Blazers starting small forward Rodney Hood this season.

In the Trail Blazers 107-103 victory over the Bulls on Friday night, Hood was extremely effective both from long distance and with his midrange game.

The six-year veteran has become the go-to guy to knockdown a corner three for the Blazers this season. Whether it’s Damain Lillard, CJ McCollum, or now Carmelo Anthony kicking it out to Hood, his teammates are finding him.

Hood finished with 19 points on an efficient 7-for-12 shooting, including 3-of-5 from long range on a night where the Blazers as a team struggled from three.

“He would be the first to say that his teammates are doing a good job,” Blazers Coach Terry Stotts said postgame. “His threes have been pretty open on weakside swings, so I think he’s been in good position.”

And Coach Stotts was right. Hood gave credit to his teammates for kicking it out to him.

“The trust has just grown between, Dame, CJ, and myself, even with Melo, he hit me with a couple on the weakside. Guys really trusting guys to knock down shots and not going up against two other three guys, they’re really trusting guys on the weakside,” Hood said.

It’s clear the Blazers have come to rely on Hood’s scoring at a consistent rate. In his last ten games, he is averaging 57.5 percent from the floor and 51.7 percent from deep.

But Coach Stotts hasn’t just been pleased with his efficient shooting.

“He’s a very skilled player,” Stotts continued. “He spots up threes, goes one-on-one to take a smaller guy to the block, he usually takes the toughest perimeter defensive assignment every night, so you know the hope was when he came back, after only being with us for a short time last year that he would feel more comfortable and be able to contribute even more.”

Now, let’s talk more about Mr. Consistent on the offensive end.

Hood is currently shooting 50.8 percent from three-point range. That ranks him second in the league only behind Marcus Morris’ 52.4 percent.

Putting in a summer of work is what Hood attributes his hot shooting to this season.

“I felt like I could always shoot the ball, but this summer I really wanted to focus on particularly shooting off the catch. It was something I felt like I could make a strength and I knew I’d get a lot of open opportunities playing with these guys,” Hood said.

Alright, but maybe it is Mr. Confident since Hood mentioned that postgame:

“You’ve just got to shoot it with confidence regardless if you make it or miss it. You’ve just gotta continue to be aggressive because if those guys pass it to you [in the corner], it’s an automatic you have to shoot the ball. I’ve just been putting in the work and right now it’s good. If I go through a slump, I still gotta step up and shoot it.”

There are many nicknames for Hood that are fitting at the moment, but ‘Hoodie’ is just going to take his open opportunities because that is the role he has been given, and that’s the role he has willingly accepted.  

Trail Blazers' newfound secret? It's "governing each other on the floor"

Trail Blazers' newfound secret? It's "governing each other on the floor"

The Trail Blazers came out with purpose Wednesday night. And they put the Oklahoma City Thunder in the old Veg-O-Matic – you know, they sliced them and diced them.

In fact, a lot of Thanksgiving turkeys won’t be carved up as precisely as the Blazers chopped up the Thunder on the way to a 135-119 win in Moda Center, just the home team’s second win of the season in its own building. This is the latest Portland has ever had to wait for its second home victory of a season.

Portland hit 10 straight shots to open the game, led by as many as 23 points in the first quarter and settled for a 42-26 advantage at the end of the period.

The Blazers set a tone that led to 52.1 percent shooting overall, including 46.7 percent from the three-point line and a perfect 24-24 night at the foul line. It was one of those nights when Portland played decent defense but with an offense that efficient, it didn’t much matter.

That fast start included handling OKC blitzes on pick-and-rolls to perfection, getting the ball to open shooters, including CJ McCollum for open three-point shots and Hassan Whiteside for those little shot-puts he fires in the lane.

Scouting report or just solid reading and reacting?

“Both, everybody’s locking in,” McCollum said. “We’re in a tough spot right now. We’re trying to win games. You’ve got to pay attention to film but you’ve also got to independently study on how they’re guarding your pick-and-rolls, which we’ve all done a better job of preparing independently and bringing it together collectively as a team.”

What we saw Wednesday was much better than we’ve seen out of this team in the past.

“Learning,” McCollum said with a smile. “We’re learning.”

Damian Lillard, who led Portland with 27 points, echoed his backcourt partner. And talked about his team not losing faith through early season problems and talking its way out of trouble. There was no pre-game plan of attack on the pick-and-roll, what happened came from communication and self-analysis,

“We didn’t talk about (the pick-and-roll offense),” Lillard said. “We’ve been communicating with each other, Everybody on the outside has been saying, this team is not doing this and this. We’re accepting the fact that we haven’t played to the level we need to.

“But we’re also trying to find solutions. And that’s in our communication and talking to each other. What do we need to do? What do you see? Governing each other on the floor is just a step in the right direction for us.

“We’re kind of seeing that and talking it out to each other. It’s coming from everybody.

“This is what we’ve got to do and everybody’s accepted it.”

Terry Stotts was not ready to proclaim his team out of the woods quite yet. Is it too early, he was asked, to say his team has it all figured out?

“Yes,” he said, “I think we’re going in the right direction. We played well against Chicago and we played well tonight. But there’s going to be other teams coming up that pose other problems and we’re going to have to figure those out. But I think we’re going in the right direction.”

There were some notable highlights from this one:

  • It was the second game in a row in which all five Portland starters scored in double figures.
  • The Blazers had 23 assists, their eighth straight game with 20-plus assists.
  • Whiteside had 21 points and 16 rebounds in just 22 minutes, becoming just the fourth player in NBA history to record at least 21 points and 16 rebounds in fewer than 23 minutes.
  • McCollum had his sixth game in a row with 20-plus points.
  • Rodney Hood made all four of his three-point shots, the third time this season he’s been perfect from behind the three-point line.

Trail Blazers know what issues they need to fix; now it’s about making those changes

Trail Blazers know what issues they need to fix; now it’s about making those changes

CLEVELAND – Both the Trail Blazers and Cavaliers were without key big men on Saturday night. Hassan Whiteside missed his second straight game with right hip soreness, while Kevin Love was out for Cleveland with a low back contusion.

Portland started Anthony Tolliver at center for the second game in a row.

As the Blazers dropped their fourth straight game with a 110-104 loss to the Cavs, the Blazers discussed the thorn in their side:

Rebounding.
Damian Lillard, who made his return after missing the last two games with back spasms, explained why he thinks they have been getting beat on the glass.

“We’re really small right now. I think teams realize that. It seems like it’s an emphasis out there, teams crash harder because they know there’s opportunity there,” Lillard said. 

Cleveland outrebounded Portland 51-38 and came up with key rebounds during crunch time.

But Lillard also offered up a solution:

“Maybe we need to start face boxing out, just turn around and find somebody just maybe let the ball bounce. Maybe that’s the answer, but I think right now, we’re really small. It’s not an excuse because there’s still times when guys are just going after it harder than we are, so I think that’s part of it sometimes – us not turning a finding guys. It’s just been a huge issue for us… We’re typically a really good defensive rebounding team and a really good offensive rebounding team, but right now we’re not really good at either one.” 

Rodney Hood, who finished with 11 points on 5-of-8 shooting to go along with five rebounds, mentioned how the Blazers have yet to figure out their rebounding problems.

“Offensively if we played a little bit better, we’d [be] in position to win that game, but obviously it’s tough, it’s always glaring at the defensive boards. I think our first initial defense is solid, but it’s going to be an ongoing issue, we just gotta continue to figure it out, I ain’t gonna say continue because we haven’t, but you know, try to figure it out and keep pushing,” Hood said.

The Blazers were outrebounded by the Bucks in Thursday night’s game, 58-41.

Two games before that, Houston beat Portland on the glass, 58-44.

This has become a common theme and it’s something Carmelo Anthony thinks the Blazers can control.

“Those are effort things… Rebounding, boxing out, keeping guys off the offensive glass, and those things that we can control… we have to control that, we have to do a better job at it,” Melo said.

For CJ McCollum, he pointed to more than just rebounding.

“We’ve been inconsistent. Obviously with our record, we’re more inconsistent than consistent… Breakdowns, fouls, offensive rebounds, a little bit of everything. I don’t think we were bad defensively, but those little lapses were costly.”

There’s no doubt once the Blazers get Whiteside back that it will help in the rebounding department. Whiteside is averaging 12 boards a game. And even with Whiteside's return, they remain small. The Blazers will have to get creative. But in the meantime, Portland needs to let their actions do the talking. It’s time to focus more energy on not giving up second and third chance opportunities.

The Blazers will now wrap-up their six-game road trip in Chicago as Portland tries to control their effort on the boards and end the trip on a positive note.