Priority No. 2: Cam Reddish, Matisse Thybulle, and Kevin Knox
The Blazers are always on the lookout for talented players who can help them compete at the highest level. They did what they could at the trade deadline and acquired some promising young players in Cam Reddish, Matisse Thybulle, and Kevin Knox.
This offseason, they will need to decide whether or not to extend qualifying offers to Reddish or Thybulle and pickup Knox’s team option.
Reddish has started every game since being acquired, and it has been easy to see the potential in his game – and he’s only 23 years old.
He’s shooting 44.8 percent from the field and 35.1 percent from three while adding much-needed length to the Blazers’ lineup. At this point, Portland should extend Reddish the $8,109,966 qualifying offer. This would give the Blazers more depth to work with moving into next season without tying up a lot of cap space.
Keeping Reddish also makes it easier to acquire a star by having multiple options for matching contracts in a trade scenario.
After being acquired, Thybulle said per Sean Highkin of Rose Garden Report newsletter and podcast, Portland is “…home to me. I’ve done countless weekend trips with my friends from Seattle to Portland. I’ve done all the hikes and seen all the waterfalls out here.”
He’s certainly playing like he wants to be a Trail Blazer. The two-time All-Defensive Second-Team guard is shooting 51.6 percent from the field and a career-high 54.5 percent from three. Even if his scoring numbers regress, his elite defense and love for Portland make him an invaluable rotation piece alongside the elite scoring guard duo of Lillard and Anfernee Simons.
Ma-Threese is a steal if he accepts his $6,275,861 qualifying offer.
Knox has only played 5 minutes per game in his four games as a Blazer. Although he’s only 23 years old, he’s in his fifth NBA season and has not shown enough to crack a starting rotation since his rookie year.
It’s clear that the Blazers’ coaching staff does not see him as an essential piece and would likely be better off saving the $3,000,000 in cap space this offseason.