Why the Portland Trail Blazers must remain calm in huge offseason

Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Norman Powell, Jusuf Nurkic, Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Norman Powell, Jusuf Nurkic, Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /
Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /

It seems a pretty sure thing that as soon as the Portland Trail Blazers dip out of the playoffs a little earlier than most predicted, there will be a mass scramble of opinions about trying to ‘save’ Damian Lillard from Portland and to get him into a team who are on the cusp of winning a championship.

Lillard seems to be that last piece of the puzzle for most teams in the league who analysts feel are missing a key player to push them over the edge into contention. There are however, wrinkles to the simplicity of these potential moves.

Portland always seems to be the afterthought in these deals that are thrown out in the offseason, but what rarely seems to be asked is does Portland really need to blow it up? I’ll list reasons as to why there is no need to overreact if you’re the Blazers.

The Portland Trail Blazers big-3 need time to grow together

Dame, CJ McCollum and Jusuf Nurkic haven’t spent almost a full season together since the 2018-19 season, due to multiple injuries to one of the three at different times. It’s been hard for these three to garner any meaningful kind of chemistry to build on and that has been proven to be half the battle to go deep into the playoffs.

Looking at the Los Angeles Lakers as an example, as soon as injuries side-lined their two best players for large parts of this season, they go from NBA Champions to losing convincingly in the first round as the 7th seed.

Continuity is key for every team and is something that has been lacking on the Trail Blazers court for major parts of the last few seasons. If they are able to spend the majority of the season on the court together, we all know what they are capable of and can absolutely push for a top-four spot in the West.

The Portland Trail Blazers can solve a lot of problems with the correct and timely offseason moves

The front office now has to take on the tall order of replacing Terry Stotts, who has been at the helm for the last nine seasons. The sooner the replacement is in, the better. The same could be said with potential trades. The Blazers have had a tradition of recent years of trading towards the backend of the trade deadline, as a boost for a late push to put themselves in contention for home court advantage in the postseason. This year’s addition of Norman Powell was no doubt a welcome one, however having him at the start of the season and giving him time to gel with the team from the offseason would have been an even bigger bonus.

Now, more than ever, it seems that the Blazers are at a crossroads with their personnel, both staff and players. The one sure thing is that Dame will be the number one priority when taking into consideration the search for a new coach and teammates. This gives the team a perfect chance to take a look around at their competition and see how they can go above and beyond to get even closer to a shot at the title. The Blazers need to use this time to be calculated in their recruitment, hire a coach that will be able to get the best out of Dame, CJ, Jusuf, and the rest of the returning roster and vice versa. Following this, the focus should move to recruiting players to fit around the new coach and system that they will want to run. This might just be the best path for Portland right now, to become more of a surprise package in the West, rather than the predictable team they are slowly becoming.

Next. What to expect from Nassir Little next season. dark