Write about the Trail Blazers
We believe that you the avid fan, student journalist, and or freelance writer deserve to be heard. Avid fans have a strong desire to hear from the common (or not so common) "man" as well. You are always free to write about the material of your choice, in your own unique style, and on your own schedule. So vent,enlighten and share with us!
Contact us at: writers@sportsmixed.com
Enjoy Trail Blazers rumors, news, talk?
Please help us spread the word on the Sports Mixed Network by letting friends, and family know about it. The more we grow our community of avid fans, the more features we can add. So please send a Tweet, Facebook message or better yet tell them in person.

Pritchard--not pushed out yet, but probably will be this summer

“I support everyone who works for me, including Kevin Pritchard” stated Paul Allen in a press release read during Thursday’s game. http://blog.oregonlive.com/behindblazersbeat/2010/03/portland_101_dallas_89.html Paul may have originally mumbled it under his breath(with cuss words before and after Pritchard‘s name, later edited out by a secretary), but he said it--general manager Kevin Pritchard is not leaving yet.

“Yet“, however, is the key word.

“When the season ends we will evaluate how best to move the Trail Blazers forward,” the release went on to say. Official speak for “we’ll ‘ditch Pritch’ later”? You bet!

Yes, Kevin Pritchard has performed miracles. Contracting Brandon Roy, Lemarcus Aldridge, Greg Oden, Rudy Fernandez and Nicolas Betum has made Portland what they are--a team that can walk away with more injuries than B51 bomber practice target and be #8 in the playoff line-up. But Pritchard also poses problems. If the reports are accurate, it isn’t a mere tiff with Corporate or a bit of arrogance that‘s putting full court press on Pritchard’s career, it’s something much more dangerous.

We’d heard about Vice President Tom Penn’s ousting for trying to beef up his salary by beefing up the story of how much Minnesota was interested in paying him to come over to their side, and how Pritchard had had a hand in that, http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news;_ylt=AiPnEpqyCi6M3tknt87wqdGKPaB4?slug=tsn-pritchardsoncourtres but what we haven’t heard about, until now, goes a bit deeper.

According to insider Adrian Wojnarowski, http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news;_ylt=AhaWidg31yD5tGWlidxEntizvLYF?slug=aw-trailblazers032210&prov=yhoo&type=lgns “How much do you make?” became Pritchards trademark question to business compatriots and acquaintances alike when he became frustrated that Coach Nate Mcmillan made more than he did earlier this season. One can only imagine the wall of tension this would create among teammates, not to mention the coach and manager. What do you do while the man who drafted you is bagging on your coach behind his back? As if that wasn‘t bad enough, Pritchard went so far as to try to increase his own salary by siding with star Brandon Roy over contract negotiations, a ploy that could have cost the team one of its best stars. After pumping out millions for contracting players, Paul Allen and Vulcan inc. couldn’t believe the audacity, or ,might we say greed, of their general manager. Having an eye for talent is important, but a nose for business, equally so. And Pritchard seems to either lack the second or put himself above the team. Either is a key ingredient for failure when you’re dealing with a franchise where team work is so integral on and off the court.

Pritchard’s uncanny ability to schmooze with his television and internet audiences to the point of seeming like a friend or neighbor, however, puts Allen and Vulcan in an unusual plight. What do you do with a GM who has charmed the fans onto his side, when you have a delicate team and playoffs are coming up?

You stall.

By letting the team finish gelling, without any more drastic alterations to their lives as a team, and by letting time pass without putting Pritchard in the lime light, thus helping fans to forget him a little, Allen and co. might feel they can quietly manoever the money-mad-man off the team.

Whether or not they will accomplish that remains to be seen, but it may be their best bet if they want to keep their coach, their team, and their fans all in one piece.

By Catherine Mullins

No comments:

Post a Comment