Trade #2 – Ball and Jaxson Hayes for Hood, Zach Collins, and a protected 2023 first-round pick
Zach Collins may have played his last game for the Portland Trail Blazers.
The young big man just hasn’t been able to catch a break over the last two seasons. In the first two years of his career, he built nicely. He increased his minutes and looked set to break out in year three as the starting power forward for the 2020 season. But a dislocated shoulder, a broken foot, and then a stress fracture, has meant that Collins has only played 11 games since May of 2019.
He will now miss all of the 2021 season and become a restricted free agent in the 2021 free agency period.
If the Blazers decide to go somewhere else in the backup center role, moving Collins makes sense.
By swapping back up centers, the Blazers could bring in raw back up big, Jaxson Hayes. Hayes hasn’t shown a huge amount in his season and a bit with the Pelicans, but his potential is definitely there.
Hayes is an explosive six-foot-eleven center, who can block shots and finish well around the rim. He was drafted with the number eight pick in the 2019 draft.
Jusuf Nurkic is the starting big man on this team, but if they decide not to bring back Collins or Harry Giles next year, Hayes could be their man.
This trade is very similar to the last one in construction, with the Blazers getting Lonzo Ball.
Ball has worked on his shooting game, and over this season and last, he has shot an excellent 37 percent from three. Though his shot isn’t perfect, he has put real effort into that part of his game and is now a legitimate spot-up shooter.
Ball gives something that none of the other back up guards do; he can create well for others. In the second unit moving forward, the Blazers need players who can help get guys looks. When you add his elite defense, he would be the perfect addition to the bench.
The Pelicans, in this trade, would get Hood and Collins, with a first-round pick. If Collins was to get healthy again, he could be the backup big for the Pelicans. They could match any deal that other teams gave because he would be restricted.
If he was to get close to his best again, Hood could have the second year of his deal guaranteed by the Pels. If not, they could cut him.