Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Blazers Celebrate Buck Williams

The Portland Blazers are celebrating their heritage this season, honoring the great players from their team's history. Earlier this month, they honored former Terp and Blazer Buck Williams (1986-89). (Williams is also currently an assistant coach for the Blazers.) Here's a story about Williams and his history with the Blazers from their website.

The spring of 1990 for Trail Blazer fans came out of the blue -- or. more aptly, out of the gray, given the hue of normal Oregon winters.

Nobody expected greatness from this team entering the season. Coming off a disappointing 39-43 record the year before, the Blazers caught fire in late February and finished the regular season winning 21 of their final 26 games. They exploded with pizzazz into the playoffs and all the way to the NBA championship Finals.

Entering those playoffs, the 1989-90 Blazers set team records for wins (59), road wins (24) and team confidence, as they fashioned the second best record in the NBA.

For many, it would be called Clyde Drexler's team, but truth be told the key to the 1989-90 turn-around season was an off-season trade that sent former Blazer Sam Bowie and a draft choice to New Jersey for Charles Linwood "Buck" Williams.

Not a splashy forward or heavy scorer, Buck Williams was a banger, a defensive stopper, an intimidator and clearly the key to the great Trail Blazers' teams that dominated most NBA opponents from 1989 through 1993.

(Bonus Video: Buck talks about wearing a bow tie on the sidelines.)

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