Portland Trail Blazers had a great plan entering the 2007 season. They had in roster a young core of Greg Oden (19), LaMarcus Aldridge (22) and Brandon Roy (23) for years to come.
They had the Big 3 in their roster and fans were excited to see the new Portland Trail Blazers.
But, they didn't even had the chance...
Greg Oden 2007 = Sam Bowie 1984
Do you remember when Portland Trail Blazers selected Sam Bowie (1984 NBA Draft) instead of Michael Jordan? It was the worst draft decision for any team in any professional sport ever made.
23 years later, they selected Greg Oden instead of Kevin Durant.
If anyone saw Oden at Ohio State it was virtually impossible not to see a dominating NBA big man. Whether or not Portland should’ve taken him over Durant is another debate, but Durant and Oden became the first set of freshmen to be voted on the All-American First Team since 1990.
We never saw Greg Oden reach his potential in his career because of injuries, but he also had some decent stat-line during in the 2009 regular season which he averaged 11.1 points, 8.5 rebounds and 2.3 blocks in just a span of 22 games.
Imagine if this guy never had a devastating injury maybe he could had 20 points and 13 rebounds in a game.
Oden’s last game in Portland Trail Blazers uniform was December 5, 2009 against Houston Rockets. He injured his left knee less than five minutes into the game and would undergo a second knee surgery, ending his season.
Oden sat out the next three seasons, being waived by the Blazers in March of 2012 during that stretch after a disastrous four-year run in Portland.
Brandon Roy: The Elite SG
During his prime years, Brandon Roy was being compared with some of the best NBA players and arguably, he was the best SG in the league after Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade.
He was named the NBA’s Rookie of the Year in 2007 after averaging 16.8 points , 4.4 rebounds and 4.0 assists. One season later he made his first All-Star game, and two seasons later he was named to the All-NBA Second Team. It was the first time a Blazers player had earned All-NBA honors since Clyde Drexler in 1991-92.
He was Top 10 NBA Scorers 2009 with 22.6 points, 4.7 rebounds and 5.1 assists.
On April 11, 2010, Brandon Roy suffered a right knee bone contusion which eventually contributed to the lack of cartilage in his knees and ultimately arthroscopic surgery on both of his knees in January 2011. He was never the same after that and took on a reserve role in Portland.
He decided to retire before the start of the 2011-12 season after the lockout.
"This is a very difficult and painful day," Roy said in a statement released by the team. "I love the game, I love the Portland Trail Blazers and I love our fans, but after consulting with my doctors, I will seek a determination that I've suffered a career ending injury, pursuant to the rules of the collective bargaining agreement."
"My family and health are most important to me and in the end this decision was about them and my quality of life," Roy said in the joint statement released by the team. "I want to thank (owner) Paul Allen, (team president) Larry Miller, Coach (Nate) McMillan, the entire Trail Blazers organization and our fans for all of their love and support during my time in Portland. It was a great ride."
The R.I.P. City
Entering the lockout-shortened season LaMarcus Aldridge was the last man standing. The dream trio of he, Greg Oden and Brandon Roy was no more.
I always asked myself, what could be if Portland Trail Blazers had Brandon Roy and Greg Oden with LaMarcus Aldridge?
How many rings they could win together?
"Me, Brandon and Greg," Aldridge said. "At the dinner table, I just remember seeing a vision of us three together, and it was something special. I felt like we were so young, we had so much time to build chemistry, so much time to grow and get better. I just saw all three of us having multiple rings. At least one ring. But it never came together. It never panned out."
Or, what if they selected Kevin Durant instead of Greg Oden?
Roster with Brandon Roy, LaMarcus Aldridge and Kevin Durant could be one of the best rosters in the NBA for many seasons.