The legend of Brandon Roy continues to grow. He is truly an NBA superstar even though he is still not a household name in many NBA cities. He’s out to prove to everyone that he belongs on the list of the NBA’s elite with the likes of Kobe Bryant, Dwayne Wade, and LeBron James. Judging by what he has already accomplished in his young career, Roy is almost there. For those who don’t agree, Brandon has a few words: “My time is almost here.”
Players like Wade and Bryant boast awe-inspiring workout routines that they follow during the NBA’s off-season. “B Roy,” as he is often called, employs the same desire and dedication to succeed as they do, albeit in his own workout regiment. He knows that he and his young Trailblazer teammates are on the verge of something really, really great in Portland. In addition to being the squad’s leading scorer, he has matured and evolved into their ever present leader. He has amped up his off-season conditioning and added a new haircut in hopes that his team will follow suit and take the next step toward an NBA Championship.
Take a look at Brandon Roy’s training camp workout and his thoughts on competing with Kobe:
When judging Roy’s dedication to win, you need look no further than his boyhood idol while growing up in Seattle, “His Airness” himself, Michael Jordan. Brandon witnessed Jordan, who was perhaps the league’s best competitor ever, continually improve and upgrade his skills every off-season, even when winning scoring titles and NBA rings.
Roy used his mentor’s inspiration to become the state of Washington’s best high school basketball player in 2002. He even flirted with going directly to the NBA before pulling out of the draft and attending the University of Washington. Even though he was a top 50 recruit, Roy had doubts about academically succeeding at the NCAA level amid problems passing the SAT test, so he took a minimum wage job at the Seattle Ports cleaning out shipping containers until he could work out his difficulties with the entrance exams. His parents discovered that he had a common learning disability, which was common to many students, and eventually he passed the exam after being granted some extra time to complete the test.
Brandon honed his all-around skills in his four seasons under Coach Lorenzo Romar at Washington. After his junior season he thought again about going pro but stayed for his senior season since teammate Nate Robinson had already declared for the draft. Roy excelled in his senior campaign, averaging 20.2 ppg and led the Huskies to a 26-7 record and a second straight Sweet 16 appearance. He received many accolades including PAC-10 Player of the Year, All-America honors, and was a finalist for many national Player of the Year awards.
With his draft stock at an all-time high, he was selected No. 6 overall in the 2006 NBA Draft, before being traded to Portland for Randy Foye. His rookie season in the NBA was sensational from the start where he scored 20 points in his first game and never looked back, averaging 16.8 ppg, 4.4 rebs, four assists, and 1.2 steals for the season. His excellent numbers as well as his team’s improved play helped earn him an All-Star nod and Rookie of the Year honors even though he played in only 57 games due to a heel injury.
During his second season he improved his numbers to 19.1 ppg and a career high 5.8 assists, earning another All-Star berth where he led all Western Conference scorers with 18 points along with Chris Paul and Amare Stoudemire. Last season, “The Natural,” as local Portland play-by-play announcer calls him, had his best season by setting career highs in scoring (22.6), rebounds (4.7), FG% (.480), and 3 PT% (.377) earning yet another All-Star appearance along with an All NBA 2nd Team Selection (first Blazer to do so since the ’92 season).
Roy could be called the next “Mr. Clutch” since he has 24 last-second shots where he has either tied or won a game with less than 35 seconds remaining. Portland definitely knows Roy’s worth as their franchise player since they resigned him in August to a four-year contract, with a fifth-year option, keeping him in “Rip City” through 2014.
Another facet of Roy’s game besides numbers is his leadership and ability to make those around him better. The season before he arrived in Portland, the Blazers finished fifth in their division with a dismal 21-61 record. Roy, along with young stars LaMarcus Aldridge and Greg Oden, helped increase the Blazers’ win totals to 32, 41, and 54 wins respectively. Roy also led them to the playoffs and has revitalized a once-proud franchise which hasn’t won an NBA title since Maurice Lucas and Bill Walton led the in 1977 under Hall of Fame Coach “Doctor” Jack Ramsey.
One thing is for sure: the NBA’s Western Conference elite teams like the Lakers and Spurs should beware of the upstart Blazers. The Blazers’ and Brandon Roy’s time is coming, if it isn’t already here. I’m sure for Blazer fans, it is “Rip City or Bust!”
Check out Brandon Roy’s website for his full workout routine (http://www.broy7.com/roy/index/)
Allen Moll is an avid NBA and college basketball fan who watches and studies games religiously and coaches youth basketball in his native Lehigh Valley region of Pennsylvania. Allen is a regular columnist for thehoopdoctors.com, Bleacherreport.com, UpperDeckblog.com, and his own blog, Hoops Haven (hoopsworld4.wordpress.com).