Practice Report: Crabbe shaking off the rust, Batum on point guards?
The Trail Blazers got their last practice of the week in this afternoon in Tualatin and as media were let into the practice facility, the players were working on shots in positional drills. Allen Crabbe, who had yet to full participate in practice since returning from an illness on Wednesday was able to participate fully.
Stotts says that Crabbe is still shaking off some of the rust.
“He practiced the full practice but like I said, he’s a little rusty but he’s coming around.”
Crabbe told the media on Wednesday that he needed to get his conditioning back into game-shape before he can return.
Stotts added that he expects Crabbe to be available on opening night.
Batum on point guards regularly?
After Terry Stotts decided to use Nicolas Batum on Stephen Curry and the line-up featuring that got 17 straight stops, Stotts hinted that he might use it regularly.
He wants to make it clear that it is not a slight to Lillard’s defense.
“Yeah, that’s definitely going to be an option,” he said. “It will be on a game-to-game basis, personnel. If we do do I don’t think anyone should take that as a slight to Damian’s defense as opposed to Nic’s ability to guard point guards.”
With point guard being the deepest position in the NBA, it’s not a surprise that Stotts would like to have the option to give Lillard a break. In addition, Batum has faired well guarding other point guards like Tony Parker or Chris Paul.
The San Antonio Spurs frequently give Tony Parker a break from guarding opposing point guards, so it will be interesting to monitor how much Stotts will be able to ease the burden on Lillard as he already carries the load offensively.