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Hassan Whiteside calls Blazers ‘the best team I’ve ever played on talent-wise’

Blazers, Hassan Whiteside

Portland Trail Blazers center Hassan Whiteside is really looking forward to his fresh start in Portland and playing with Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum.

The Blazers acquired Whiteside this summer from the Miami Heat in exchange for Meyers Leonard. Whiteside says the Blazers are “potentially the best team I’ve ever played on talent-wise.”

“I think you guys will really enjoy the blocks, the dunks, the rebounds, me flexing,” Whiteside said in an interview with NBCSports Northwest. “As far as the team, I definitely want to increase on the record from last year. This is potentially the best team I’ve ever played on talent-wise and it’s not many times you get the opportunity you get a real shot at winning the championship. So as a team, I just want to be that defensive anchor and just bring as much as I can to the team.”

The Blazers are hoping Hassan Whiteside can recapture his 2016-17 form when he averaged 17.0 points and 14.1 rebounds for the Heat.

Last season in Miami, Whiteside put up 12.3 points and 11.3 rebounds per game while shooting 57.1 percent from the field. He recorded 36 double-doubles, but overall his impact has dipped in recent years.

Whiteside has one year left on his deal with Portland. He’ll make $27 million next season and start at center while Jusuf Nurkic recovers from his leg injury. Let’s see if Whiteside can play like an All-Star in Portland alongside Lillard and McCollum.

The Blazers, who made it to the Western Conference Finals last season, are counting on Whiteside to anchor the middle on both ends of the floor.