What tier of co-star can Portland land?
The Blazers would likely be able to get a deal done with the Bulls to lift the restrictions on the pick they owe. Assuming they do, they’ll have much more flexibility to trade future picks.
The blockbuster trades mentioned above involve a promising prospect, multiple first-round picks, or a combination of both. With Simons, Sharpe, numerous first-round picks and pick swaps available, the Blazers should be able to get a deal done.
The looming question is, what level of co-star will they be able to get with their tradeable assets?
The Rudy Gobert and Dejounte Murray trades may have set a new precedent for the amount of first-round picks required to obtain a star. After evaluating Portland’s tradeable assets, it’s likely that they’d be able to get someone in that tier.
However, more would be needed to get a superstar who falls a tier above, like Kevin Durant. Mikal Bridges and Cam Johnson are much more established players in the league than Anfernee Simons and Shaedon Sharpe. In addition, Durant was disgruntled and seeking a trade.
A superstar will unlikely request a trade and include Portland on their “wish list” of teams.
A Jimmy Butler-type star may be a reasonable middle ground between Gobert and Durant. Minnesota’s trade for Butler in 2017 also seems similar in terms of packages Portland can offer.
The Timberwolves gave up an emerging star in Zach LaVine, the fifth-overall pick from the previous year’s draft in Kris Dunn, and the No. 7 pick to land Butler. Meanwhile, the Blazers have their emerging star, Anfernee Simons, and the seventh overall pick from last year’s draft in Sharpe.
In addition, they’re guaranteed a top-nine pick in this year’s draft.