Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Steve Blake Goes Back to Portland

Steve Blake (1999-2003), who was a free agent this summer, has signed a new 3 year deal with the Portland Trailblazers. Blake played for Portland in 2005-06 before being traded to Milwaukee last summer, and then traded again to Denver mid-season.
Personal ties helped lure Blake back to Portland. He lives in West Linn during the offseason and has a strong connection with Blazers general manager Kevin Pritchard. Blake was the first player Pritchard signed when he became the Blazers' director of player personnel, luring him to Portland from the Washington Wizards with a free agent contract.

Pritchard has long rued the day when Blake was traded last summer to Milwaukee with Brian Skinner and Ha Seung Jin for center Jamaal Magloire.

When the free agent market opened July 1, Pritchard identified Blake as a target for the Blazers, who were looking for more experience at the point guard position, which was occupied last season primarily by youngsters Jarrett Jack (in his second year last season) and Sergio Rodriguez (a rookie last season).

HoopsWorld.com has a good analysis article about the off-season moves and the point guard situation in Portland. They think it looks like Blake should be the new starter this season.

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