Former first overall draft pick and Lawrence North legend, Greg Oden officially ended his relationship with the Portland Trail Blazers on Thursday. The team waived Oden to open up his roster spot after acquiring several players with expiring contracts before the NBA trade deadline on Friday.
I was surprised to see Oden join his team on the bench when the Blazers played the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhoue on Tuesday night. After seeing Oden have so much success on that court during his illustrious high school career, it was a little sad to see the big fella hobble to the bench on crutches as he continues to recover from a third microfracture knee surgery.
Oden was in the final year of his contract after accepting a reduced qualifying offer from the Blazers for this season with the hopes of returning to the court at some point. Unfortunately, Oden returned for more surgery instead and will now continue his recovery on his own.
Ben Golliver breaks down the heartbreaking numbers Oden leaves behind in Portland.
Oden leaves the Blazers with career averages of 9.4 points, 7.3 rebounds, 1.4 blocks in 22.1 minutes per game. Oden is being released 1,722 days after he was drafted. He appeared in just 1,816 minutes of regular season action for the Blazers.
Oden remains a sharp young man with a bright future ahead of him, I just wonder if he has any basketball left in him. Let's hope so.