Ask Dwight: Lillard an all-star this year?
TUALATIN – After sitting out the last two games with a knee strain, LaMarcus Aldridge will return to the Portland Trail Blazers’ starting lineup for the final exhibition game against the Golden State Warriors Thursday night at Oracle Arena.
“I feel good,” Aldridge said. “I wanted to get another game in before the regular season. It’ll be good to have the whole team together to get some work in before our opener (against Phoenix Oct. 30).
Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts has yet to play a preseason game with all of his players available due to numerous injuries. That will change on Thursday and that game will be treated fairly close to a regular season contest.
“I think we’re going to have a pretty serious approach to the Golden State game,” Stotts said. “It’ll be the first game that we’ve had everybody available. So I would like to at least try to get a close resemblance to a rotation that we’ll use in the season.”
Aldridge may have taken some time off, but he was already in mid-season form.
In three preseason games, Aldridge has averaged 15.3 points, 6.0 rebounds, 1.3 blocks in 19.0 minutes per game while shooting an incredible 61 percent from the field.
This team is currently on a four-game exhibition winning streak. The chemistry is impressive. You can just imagine the potential once everybody gets accustom to playing with one another. Thursday will be a huge step in that building block.
“I’d like the starters to get some time together and for me to get used to a rotation,” Stotts said. “It’s a final tune-up.”