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February 26, 2011

Silas wins over Przybilla

It's no secret former Portland Trail Blazers center Joel Przybilla had major misgivings about being traded to the Bobcats. He didn't want to uproot his family and he questioned what sort of a role the Bobcats had in mind for him.

An hour and a half of meetings with coach Paul Silas, general manager Rod Higgins and team owner Michael Jordan apparently smoothed over all that. Przybilla said at practice Saturday that he's excited because the Bobcats are excited to have him.

Przybilla thought he was just being thrown into the deal for Gerald Wallace because of his expiring contract. Silas convinced him he'll play plenty as the backup to Kwame Brown; that's he's wanted and needed.

"When I first saw him, walking down the hall, I said, 'How are you doing?' He said, 'Ah, I'm doing...' '' Silas described. "I said you're going to be all right and then we sat down and had a long talk.

"I said how good he could make our ballclub, how good it could be for him. If he wants to play another year or whatever, I really think he will be able to, because people are going to see a lot different, as they've seen in some other players who have played here.''

Przybilla has a knee injury, and acknowledged he's not 100 percent. Silas said they'll manage his minutes, in consideration of how he's feeling physically. But Silas is counting on Przybilla to protect the rim, to be more of a shotblocker and post defender than Nazr Mohammed was here.

I'll have a lot more about Przybilla -- the new Bobcat with the biggest role of the three -- in Sunday's Observer.

Posted by Observer Sports on February 26, 2011 at 02:17 PM | Permalink


Shotblocker? A Post Defender? Healthy? You have GOT to be kidding!

This walking wounded is a waste of a roster spot. At least we only have to see this 1 point, 3 rebound per game bench-warmer for 24 games...then it's buh, bye.

Posted by: Dug E Fresh | Feb 26, 2011 2:43:55 PM

Oh, Bonnell, you're not going to talk trash about Przybilla now that he's "bought in?" You guys are a joke down there.

Posted by: Dug E Spoiled | Feb 26, 2011 2:44:38 PM

If the Bobcats offer Przybilla a contract I'll treat you and 19 of your best friends to lunch

Posted by: Yak | Feb 26, 2011 2:48:44 PM

You can wait to call him a waste of a roster spot until he actually proves that's what he is. At least give him a chance.

Posted by: Chris | Feb 26, 2011 2:48:55 PM

As it stands with only two true centers on the roster I don't see how we have much of a choice.

Posted by: Geraldmutumbo | Feb 26, 2011 3:12:28 PM

Blazer fan here... Przybilla's a good dude. You all have a right to be pissed at MJ and the Bobcats organization for engaging in another salary dump -- but you be nice to Joel.

He went through a lot of pain in rehab to make it back to the NBA from an injury that many said he would never recover from, a ruptured patella tendon. He's a shadow of what he was as a rebounder (he was world class, let there be no mistake), but he's got heart and intangibles and is an asset to any organization even if he's running at 50% or whatever...

Posted by: Tim Davenport | Feb 26, 2011 3:32:51 PM

Maybe you all could convince the Bobcats ownership/management to buy out his contract so he can come back to Portland - where he belongs

Posted by: Paul | Feb 26, 2011 3:37:55 PM

Also: the key player the Bobcats obtained in this deal was Dante Cunningham, not Przybilla. Of course he's not equal value for Crash, but he's heady and plays with the same sort of energy as a 3/4 tweener. He will be a useful player if he sticks around...

Posted by: Tim Davenport | Feb 26, 2011 3:38:35 PM

Michael Jordan decided to dump Gerald and his contract as part of a rebuilding project. We got Przybilla because that's what Portland was ready to give us for Gerald. Then, we dumped Nazr, so we won't have an overload at 5 once we took Przybilla!
Of course, J.P. will play - as long as his knees allow him - since he is now Kwame's back-up. But, it's a downgrade from Nazr.
Probably because of his injuries, his shot blocking isn't this season what it used to be.

Nazr actually improved his shot blocking this season: .9 b/g, while Przybilla has just .4 b/g.
More significant, per 40 minutes played this season, Nazr has 2.16 blocks, while Przybilla has 1.25 blocks.
Then, rebounding per 40 minutes played this season: 11.8 R/40m for Nazr, 10.8 R/40m for Przybilla.
And, of course, Nazr always had much better offensive skills than Przybilla.

I have nothing against Przybilla, and I hope he stays healthy and he'll be useful for the Bobcats. I also appreciate coach Silas' readiness to do the best with what he has.
But, these trades weaken the team for the rest of this season; as for the future, it's a gamble that may, or may not, work.
I would've preferred the 'Cats to take different, more solid, not gambling, routes towards improving the team (in the offseason).

Posted by: Sandy | Feb 26, 2011 4:15:30 PM

Blazer fan 2 here, echoing the sentiments of Davenport. You all be nice to Przybilla. He is quality and class. I'm glad to see he's being treated well by the brass. He deserves the same from the fans.

Posted by: Colombo | Feb 26, 2011 4:17:21 PM

Be NICE! Joel is a TERRIFIC Guy - in every way....HATE to see him have to leave our Blazer Family....He gives his ALL, 100% of what he's got at that time...NO, he's not a scorer, never has been and never will be BUT he does so MANY Intangibles ... YOU will be surprised. Enjoy having ONE "H" of a NICE guy playing for and representing Charolette!

Posted by: M. Llewellyn | Feb 26, 2011 4:34:30 PM

Lemme tell you, the Bobcats got one of the toughest guys in the NBA. Pryz is all iron and heart. I'm so sorry to see him go, even if I'm glad Wallace is a Blazer.

Look, he may not be 100%, but you got a hard-nose enforcer protecting the middle. He'll grow on you.

Posted by: German Blazer | Feb 26, 2011 5:05:02 PM

Honestly I don't have any problem with this deal. This team had no where to go with Wallace other than first round sweeps so lets see how players like Henderson look.

We still have Jackson to provide the bulk of the offense and hopefully having the additonal draft picks will let us build a team that can do something.

Posted by: Tyler | Feb 26, 2011 5:52:08 PM

It is true, that which Przybilla will bring to Charlotte is intangibles. He's had his games and still can, don't get me wrong, but his knee isn't quite right yet. His value is truly in his heart and his grit. You'll get to see it if you can be open enough to look.

He turns into fan favorites wherever he goes. Keep an open mind. Why else would Portland fans be so broken up over a guy with stats like he has right now?

He will and has gone toe to toe with Shaq, Boozer and Kobe. He trains MMA and will never stop working. Like G Wallace he leads by example. He is a workhorse and is such a class act.

Give him a chance.


Posted by: WyattFNEarp | Feb 26, 2011 6:00:58 PM

Good luck Joel! Gonna miss you. Hope you come back full strength and prove to the "fans" there that your career ain't over.

Posted by: pinchedloaf | Feb 26, 2011 6:24:20 PM

I was wrong; Dug E Fresh knows what he is talking about. I didn't mean to say "you guys down there," especially when I know most of you living down in Charlotte aren't originally from there.
What can I say...as a Blazer fan,I have to go over 43 years back to when we had Walton and Lucas to find a NBA Championship. In fact, it's not like RIP City is anything special. Charlotte has football, basketball, college basketball, and even hockey's not too far away.
Good luck Bobcats fans! We'll take good care of Gerald Wallace.If you don't want Pryz at the end of the season, we'll take him back!
MJ, I wish we would have drafted you, instead of Bowie...we may have been able to hang more banners!

Posted by: DugE Spoiled | Feb 26, 2011 6:44:58 PM

Talk is cheap JP has a month and a half to show us what he has. The important guy in this trade is Cunningham. I hope he has game and an upside.

Posted by: easye | Feb 26, 2011 6:46:06 PM

Cunningham is a baller and I am glad that MJ just didn't swap JP for Wallace and draft picks because that would be a head scratcher. Even though this team needs to save money and gain draft picks for the future. MJ did things the right way and kudos to them for that. JP is definitely a keeper heck he may start over Kwame if he busts his but the knee is the only holdup. Don't forget about DJ White he was a beast and hope he gets the tick. I am glad we are bringin Derrick Brown back in the lineup. But as much as I am crazy about Wallace's hustle and ability he was definitely on the decline, but still has that ability to do everything. I am quite sure that will help the Blazers this year and many more to come.

Posted by: tbird | Feb 26, 2011 7:12:30 PM

Depending upon what mgt does with the draft picks, this could be an awesome trade. I do have to admit, I wish the player traded was another 20mill guy instead of GWall but it is what it is. JP know nothing about him, but from what everyone in Portland is saying, and other teams around the league praying we cut him, his intangibles might surprise.... the important guys/guys from this trade arent on the team yet, they will be what we can get from those 2 1st rounders... Will miss G-Wall, he was what a pro athelete should be - Class and Grit..

Posted by: HenryC | Feb 26, 2011 7:18:38 PM

Who wrote that crap with my monicker? Screw that.

Posted by: Dug E Spoiled | Feb 27, 2011 1:46:18 AM

Hey guys. For anybody who cares to read them, here's some of my comments on Przybilla and Cunningham, from another Blazer fan's perspective. I know it's hard to swallow when stuff like this happens, but we've got Joel's back. I really hope you guys give him a chance and see him for the great guy he is.

On Joel:
Seriously, when you guys watch Joel, understand that he’s no where near 100%. He’s been such a rock for the Blazers for so long helping the team transition from the Jailblazers to what they are now and he’s been an OUTSTANDING citizen in Portland, he’s one of the most under-appreciated guys in the league. Every Portland fan will tell you the same. He’d give his shirt off his back for his teammates, he doesn’t back down from the trash talkers like Garnett, Shaq, and Stoudemire, and he’s pretty much a mean SOB that you hate to play against, but love having on your team. There isn’t a fan in Oregon that didn’t like Przybilla for the way he called it like he saw it, his blue collar work ethic, and the fact that no matter what, he had his team’s back. We all love him and wish nothing but the best for he and his family. I truly hope he’ll get to come home to the Rose Garden in the future and retire a Blazer.

If you can, try to watch the upcoming game in Portland when Charlotte visits. You’ll see the standing ovation that Joel deserves.

On Dante:
Dante is another great guy, comes from and Air Force family. He doesn’t have a real high ceiling, but he’s another blue collar work horse. He doesn’t quit at all, and he’s got a really high BBIQ which allows him to play bigger than he is. It’s only his second year this year, but he plays like a vet. The only knock on him is his size. If he were a little bigger, he’d be a great PF. I don’t know what Thomas’ work ethic is like, but if he’s lazy, Dante will take his minutes if you guys don’t have another option.
I don't know if any of this helps ease your minds, but Blazer fans loved these guys. I think most of us would have considered Joel family. The way you guys feel about Wallace is strikingly similar to the way we feel about Joel, and we're really going to miss him. Take care Bobcat fans. Good luck with the rest of the year, and please, take care of our guys. They deserve nothing but the best.

Posted by: Eric | Feb 27, 2011 2:01:24 AM

On a side note, as a Blazer fan, I appologize for the trolling from some of the less civilized Blazer fans that have made their way here. You guys don't need that. Nobody does. As a rule, we're usually better than that.

Joel, if you happen to read any of this. Once a Blazer, always a Blazer my friend. We love ya, and hope you find your way home to us real soon, even if it's just for a visit. We'll have the Coors light on ice for ya when you get here. Take care.

Posted by: Eric | Feb 27, 2011 2:05:44 AM

Blazer fan here. To Bobcat fans:

'billa is a beast, make no bones about it. He may now be a much more lumbering beast than he used to, but he also seems bigger, meaner, and scarier than he used to. Scary, you say? Ahh, just wait.

One thing about being not as mobile, but also bigger, means that 'billa is always ready to take a charge. Yes, he is very good at taking charges and falling like a giant oak tree. He usually gets the call too, because officials know him.

Plus, officials know that when 'billa fouls someone, he doesn't try to hide it. He's not a sneaky little punk like KG or a crafty Euro like Pao. No, he's going to turn bright red, and foul the living crap out of someone, and not try to hide it, and they will feel it.

'billa also has a way of getting into the other team's head and then they rage and get ejected, t'd up, etc. I'll never forget the time 'billa dropped Kobe to the floor and Kobe got the technical, or the time 'billa got himself and Carlos Boozer ejected after taking a charge. If I recall, Jerry Sloan subsequently was also ejected! Or when he got a flagrant 2 called on Brian Cook by, once again, taking a charge.

You'd think he would play less physical perhaps after his injury but I think not. He just plays slower and can't jump as high, but he will still take a charge or foul the crap out of someone. As a Blazer fan I am sad to see him go, because they don't track stats like charges taken, or how effective the team becomes when he's on the floor vs. when he's not.

But I always felt that when he's in there, we have a better chance to win. It's that simple. He's a hard-nosed player who never gives less than 100% and always has his teammates' back, and who gets fired up. But he's not a "stupid" type hotheaded player, he's a smart individual who has a chip on his shoulder -- AS IT SHOULD BE when you are a center in the NBA!

Meanwhile Dante Cunningham is a space vampire. This guy can hit the outside jumper, free throws, and he will surprise you with devastating slams and blocks. A very athletic individual, very active on the defensive end of the floor, and the only thing I ever questioned about him was why does he wear a mouthpiece that makes it look like his two front teeth are missing due to its black stripe down the middle? Combined with his clear plastic mask from the broken face bone, this mouthpiece make him appear as the Space Vampire. I think the kids will love this guy!

Sean Marks is a tall lanky white guy who can hit an outside three on a good day and, well, he also plays center, kinda. I mean, there's a reason he's not a starter, but he is not a bad player. I don't see why he shouldn't get some minutes. He did in Portland, and it wasn't so bad.

Personally I think Gerald Wallace trade was more for Portland about clearing a place for Brandon in the line up and getting someone who can help relieve pressure off LaMarcus on the offensive end of the floor especially. Cunningham is really more of a 3, than a 4. Roy can play the 2 or the 3. But Portland wants him more at the 3 since Rudy is a 2. So Cunningham had to go, even though he's a great player and I think his ceiling is much higher than people say.

Wallace can come in at the 4 or the 3 so it just makes him more flexible in the ways that the Blazers needed flexibility. But this trade only makes sense when you consider that Marcus Camby is set to return, and even though 'billa is less than 100%, he's way healthier than Oden, evidently...

Posted by: Jon | Feb 27, 2011 12:18:57 PM

Yes, JP is a gamble but Bobcats are playing a strong cards here:

1. If JP is back to his old-self, injury free, then MJ hits the home-run and JP will probably resign with far less for repaying Bobcats to revive his career.

2. If JP can't play, his contract expire at the end of the season and Bobcats can look for another big man in the market. The deal still don't look too bad, especially for a rebuilding franchise.

It's a deal with tones of potential, and in the worst case it's still even.

Posted by: Amos | Feb 27, 2011 10:18:22 PM

Glad to read all the Przybilla endorsements from the Blazer fans. He sounds like a class act, and I'm sure he'll be a fan favorite in Charlotte.

But having said that, I still don't like these trades. We traded the team's best all-around player (Wallace) and most effective low post scorer (Muhammad) for role players, mid-level draft picks and cap relief. It sure feels like a salary dump to me.

Posted by: GSO Cats Fan | Feb 28, 2011 11:02:36 AM

After the Bobcats draft a 1 and a 3 in the first round this year the trade will make sense to the doubters.... Cats should get three good players in the draft this year. I like Leonard, Barnes or Federette with the first pick and then Singleton or Nolan Smith with the 2nd first rounder. Then a 4 in the second round - there are serveral good ones that will still be on the board.

Posted by: Dominator | Mar 2, 2011 3:30:09 PM

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