Preseason, Greg Oden has lose some unwanted pounds and was playing an all around game with double-double average most of the games going to the season. It was his best outing ever since coming from an injury which barred him to play on his rookie year. Oden was the no.1 overall pick in 2007 and despite playing only 61 games last season he was still a force to reckon with at the center position. His mere presence could give some driving players second thoughts with the 7-foot, 270 lbs. behemoth standing right in front of you. But that was not the case last December 5 when Oden decide to defend Aaron Brooks of the Houston Rockets but fractured his left kneecap in return. One of the most dominating center in the NBA today; Oden looked like a helpless child clutching his hands grimacing in pain as his teammates went on to help him. Greg was trying too hard to be not the same level as Sam Bowie Portland’s no.2 pick in the 1984 draft a pick ahead of one of the greatest player in NBA history Michael Jordan. Although there are a lot of comparison between them but it would be unfair to compare Oden with a busted player who we never got to see his potential after a series of knee injuries.
He will be out for the rest of the season and the Portland Trail Blazers will have to use more time in reliable center Joel Przybilla. There would come a time when the team will learn to move on without Oden just like the Rockets with Mcgrady. Coming from a microfracture knee injury on his rookie season a foot injury in his NBA debut against the Lakers then a fractured knee cap last February bumping with Corey Maggette and with only 21 games this season Oden fractured his left patella or knee cap on the first quarter against the Rockets. He is still 21 years old but there are only a few players who are able to prolong their careers after series of injuries like what Oden is suffering.
The game ended with a thriller with Brandon Roy’s 28 points and a lay-up which sealed the 90-89 precarious one point win. Oden told his teammates to keep fighting without him but question would be for how long? I hope he will be back in tip top form don’t matter if he would not reach to his potential but at least he could call it a career with years ahead before retiring. We all hope so.