What would happen if the Trail Blazers traded Hassan Whiteside? A 2K20 experiment

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Portland Trail Blazers

Hassan Whiteside #21 of the Portland Trail Blazers handles the ball (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)

As the trade deadline grows closer, Hassan Whiteside’s name keeps floating the rumor mill. Here’s what 2K20 says the Trail Blazers could get for the big man.

While Portland Trail Blazers fans anxiously await the return of Jusuf Nurkic, the other question burning in the back of everyone’s minds is what the future holds in store for Hassan Whiteside. With his contract set to expire upon the season’s conclusion, rumors and speculation surround the center in a year he’s silenced many critics and doubters.

Whiteside is averaging 15.8 points, 13.9 rebounds, and 3.1 blocks per game — all career bests since the 2016-17 season when he led the NBA in rebounds while being just one year removed from his All-Defensive Team nomination where he also led the league in blocks per game.

That gaudy stat line is sure to have at least a few suitors lining up to bolster their frontcourt and should have the 30-year-old big man set to earn one last big payday this summer.

But will the Trail Blazers be able to afford such a hefty sum? Considering the exorbitant amount they’ll soon owe Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum, coupled with the recent moves they’ve made to dodge the luxury tax, the answer is likely a resounding no.

So if Portland does not intend to bring Whiteside back, it makes sense to try to recoup as much value as possible before he walks. While we all have our own personal favorite fan trade proposals, I decided if I was going to play make-believe general manager, what better way to do it than with basketball’s most popular simulator?

To start this little experiment, I put Hassan Whiteside on the trade block following Tuesday’s loss to the Denver Nuggets. I glossed over the best trade proposals other teams sent in, then promptly simulated the rest of the season starting from today, where the Trail Blazers currently stand at 23-28.

What I ended up finding was quite surprising. Without making any further moves, Portland ended up finishing the year with a record of 39-43. That result slotted them in the ninth seed and meant they’d be missing the big postseason ball. But thanks to 2K, I was able to test different scenarios and try my hand at rewriting history.

Here’s what other teams were willing to cough up for the domineering post presence, and how the hypothetical trades affected Portland’s place in the standings at the end of the year.

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