Stotts, Players Welcome Powell, Bid Farewell To Hood, Trent Jr.

by Casey Holdahl
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Prior to Thursday's game versus the Heat in Miami, Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts, along with Damian Lillard, Enes Kanter and Anfernee Simons, discussed the trade earlier in the day that resulted in Portland acquiring guard/forward Norman Powell from the Toronto Raptors in exchange for Rodney Hood and Gary Trent Jr. 

TERRY STOTTS

"Losing Rodney and Gary is tough. They’ve been with us for over two years, they’re good guys, good players, good teammates and we’re going to miss having them around. When you go to the gym and you enjoy working with the people that you work with, it’s tough to lose those guys.

"As far as getting Norman, he’s a really good two-way player and it’s kind of what we need. Obviously his shooting numbers speak for themselves, but what he can do defensively on the perimeter is something that we really need and value. He’s going to have a major role with our team."

DAMIAN LILLARD

"GT been here the last three years, Hoodie been here the last three years, he was with us for our big playoff run. Coming off injury, was excited to have him back. When you see them go, that’s the first thing that you think of, like ‘Damn.’ Your teammates, your friends, people that you spend so much time around over the years, they won’t be back. They kind of moving on with their lives, so I think that’s the first thing that you think about, first thing that pulls at you like ‘Damn,’ you know? They gotta go through that and they won’t be on our team no more, that’s the first thing.

"And then being in my ninth year, I understand that it’s a business. A lot of things go into those kind of decisions, but for me, the main thing is I feel for them.

"I like Norman Powell, he can really help our team, he’ll make us a better team defensively. His experience, he’s having the best season of his career as well. There’s always two sides. I think Norman Powell can really help our team, bring us some new things, even from an experience standpoint. He won a championship two years ago and had a significant role on that team. But as a teammate of GT and Hoodie and as a friend of theirs, it’s just a tough situation. Any time you have it, especially when it’s not guys who were on the team for a few months or one year or nothing like that -- they’ve been around -- it’s tough because of that. But we welcome Norman Powell as well."

ENES KANTER

"Those two were a bit part of our family. People loved them so much and every minute they were out there they were giving everything they could to help us win. So I just wish them good luck. Obviously whenever a trade happens it’s very sad to see your brothers leaving but I guess in the end, it’s the business.

"But we are also very excited about Norman. I think he’s going to bring so much to us offensively. Defensively, there’s going to be so much energy. Obviously you cannot say enough about his shooting, three-pointers and everything. I think he’s going to bring so much energy on both ends of the floor, so really excited about him."

ANFERNEE SIMONS

"Pretty sad, ain’t gonna lie. Obviously Gary somebody I came in with, we grew a really good friendship with each other. Sucks for him to go but I know he’s gonna do well. He’s expecting a big payday at the end of the season, so I’m happy for him to be able to get the opportunity, be able to take care of his family and stuff. Obviously we’ll miss him, somehow we were always together so I’m gonna miss him. And Rodney too, someone I also gained a great relationship with. Those were the two guys I was kind of closest with on the team, so it’s pretty tough, but you gotta know it’s part of the business. I’m gonna miss Rodney a lot because he’s one of the funniest, if not THE funniest, on the team. We’re gonna miss his presence around all the time. We wish them good luck. Rodney coming back from his injury, I hope he gets the opportunity with the Raptors and be able to showcase himself again, get back to the old Rodney. I’m looking forward to seeing him play.

"As for Norman, I worked out with him pre-draft. I went out to Las Vegas for a week and ended up working out with him, so we know each other pretty well. His game speaks for itself. He was playing really well this year, a lot of big time games this season. He can shoot the ball, defend, got long arms, athletic. He’s a player who’s play speaks for itself, a winner, obviously he won a championship. I look forward to having him on the team."

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