The Portland Trail Blazers remain one player short of contending for a title. Which star should they target to add next to Lillard and McCollum?
The offseason dust has settled and the Portland Trail Blazers came out saddled in the same position they’ve been in the entirety of the Damian Lillard–CJ McCollum era, one piece away from seriously contending for a title. Though after years of building, the Blazers may be at the point where they’ve accumulated enough assets to package in a trade for a star.
The biggest challenge facing them in that regard is the availability of a star and whether or not they will be able to top rival offers. While Portland has a large expiring contract in Hassan Whiteside to provide future cap relief, some nice young talent, and possession of all their future first-round picks, there are teams that have shinier toys they can potentially put on the table.
The purpose of this exercise is to outline trades for star players who are more realistically attainable based on their current team status and conjecture around the league. The goal is to also do this while preserving the cor of Dame, CJ and Jusuf Nurkic moving forward.
Something worth noting is that none of the players discussed in this piece would necessarily make the Portland Trail Blazers title favorites.
The only players who were recently available through trade that potentially would’ve done that were Paul George and Anthony Davis, both of whom were determined to be in L.A. Very few people were even aware George was available until he got traded.
Portland wasn’t going to top either the Clippers or Lakers immense offers, so they’ll have to make due with what the hand they’ve been dealt.