Portland Trail Blazers: 4 potential trades to improve at the wing

Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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Portland Trail Blazers
Andre Iguodala #9 of the Golden State Warriors shakes hands with Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The proven champion and lockdown defender

While he gave the Blazers headaches in last year’s Western Conference Finals sweep, Andre Iguodala could make for an interesting target that would fit seamlessly in Portland’s lineup.

Let’s not kid ourselves, Andre Iguodala is not the player he once was. 15 years in the league will do that to you. He certainly has no chance of living up to his $17.2 million salary next year. Then again, neither does Kent Bazemore. Even at 35-years-old, Iguodala would serve as an improvement over any current perimeter player on the Blazers roster.

Memphis resisted media pressure and the urge to cut Iguodala for nothing so he could join LeBron over in Los Angeles, so they’re clearly looking to get something of value in return, no matter how small. An expiring contract in Bazemore and two future second-round draft picks (scheduled to convey in 2022 and 2024) would be an agreeable price for both parties.

Despite his age, Iggy has proven he effectively saves his energy for the playoffs. Last season, he averaged 5.7 points and 3.7 rebounds per game, posting a Box Plus/Minus of 1.9 when he was on the court. He took his game to another level in the playoffs however, averaging a deceptively effective 9.8 points and 4.3 rebounds per contest, with a huge increase in his Box Plus/Minus score at 4.2.

He’s proven he can have a big presence in any game even when the ball isn’t in his hands. Not only would picking Iguodala up help out Portland’s porous defense, it would also keep him off an opposing team’s roster. Iggy has gotten in the Portland Trail Blazers way before, they’d be wise to not let it happen again. Also, Memphis would likely feel pretty smug about sending him somewhere other than Los Angeles.