Trail Blazers: 3 players to watch as March Madness approaches

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March Madness is approaching, and the Trail Blazers will have a higher draft pick than usual. Here are a few players for fans to keep their eyes out for.

As we near the month of March, the Portland Trail Blazers are sitting significantly lower in the standings than initially expected at the start of the season. Damian Lillard, Zach Collins, Rodney Hood, and Jusuf Nurkic all sidelined, while the Blazers battle for the 8th spot with the Pelicans and the Grizzlies for a shot at the 43-12 Lakers, would not have been viewed as an ideal scenario.

However, it is what it is, and although the Blazers can still definitely sneak into the postseason, it’s not too early to start thinking about the 2020 NBA draft, especially with March Madness just around the corner.

Missing the playoffs would be underwhelming, but a shot at a quality talent out of college could prove to be worth it in the long run. With the madness set to begin in a few weeks’ time, I decided to take a look at a few players the Blazers could realistically target this summer.

If Portland does end up missing the playoffs, I don’t expect them to finish lower than 10th in the West standings. Their remaining schedule added to the fact that Damian Lillard would never, ever tank a game of basketball; worst-case scenario I have the Blazers around the 12-14 range in the draft order, which would mean a shot at the lottery.

The Trail Blazers initial needs from this draft are wing scoring, defensive potential, and possibly a creative guard to back up Lillard. I’ll start with scoring.

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