3 pros and 3 cons of Trail Blazers pursuing a trade for Draymond Green

Apr 2, 2023; Denver, Colorado, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) reacts towards a Denver Nuggets fan in the third quarter at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 2, 2023; Denver, Colorado, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green (23) reacts towards a Denver Nuggets fan in the third quarter at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

Even at 33 years old, Draymond Green is still among the most impactful players in the NBA. His combination of defensive intensity, playmaking ability, and basketball IQ have helped the Golden State Warriors become one of the most dominant teams in recent history.

Next to Steph Curry, Green has been arguably the most impactful player during the Warriors’ dynastic decade.

There is talk of Green being added to the Portland Trail Blazers to be for Damian Lillard what he has been for Steph Curry. This is not the first time there have been rumors about Lillard wanting Green to join Rip City.

In 2021, Sam Amick of The Athletic reported (h/t Bleacher Report) that Lillard and Green are close friends and said, “If we were handicapping Draymond trade destinations…that’s the one. Damian and his group have for the last couple years been campaigning for that…”

Earlier in these NBA playoffs, Dame even defended Green’s latest internet-breaking foul – yet another moment where the two have spoken about each other on Twitter.

Would adding Green be beneficial for the Trail Blazers? Let’s weigh the pros and cons.

Pros to Trail Blazers adding Draymond Green

Defensive Presence: Draymond is a four-time NBA champion and a former Defensive Player of the Year. He is known for his defensive intensity and versatility, and his ability to guard multiple positions would be a huge asset to the Trail Blazers.

With Green on the floor, the Blazers could become a much tougher defensive team, which would help them win games, especially in the postseason.

Playmaking Ability: Green is also an excellent playmaker. He has averaged 5.6 assists per game throughout his career, and his ability to create scoring opportunities for his teammates would be a great complement to Damian Lillard’s scoring ability.

Green’s high basketball IQ would also help the Blazers run their offense more effectively and efficiently.

Championship Experience: Green has won four NBA championships with the Golden State Warriors and has played in six NBA Finals. His experience in big games and his leadership would be invaluable to a young Blazers team that has struggled to get past the first round of the playoffs in recent years.

Green’s championship pedigree and winning mentality could help the Blazers take the next step as a team.

Cons to Trail Blazers adding Draymond Green

Fit with Lillard: While Green’s playmaking ability would be a great complement to Lillard’s scoring ability, there is also the question of how well the two players would fit together on the court. Green is not known for his shooting ability, and his lack of spacing could potentially hurt Lillard’s ability to create his own shot.

There would need to be some adjustments made to the Blazers’ offensive scheme to make the most of both players’ abilities. While the Warriors have the genius of Steve Kerr to make their offense flow, the Blazers’ coaching has been heavily questioned.

Cost: Acquiring Green would likely come at a high cost for the Blazers. He is still a highly sought-after player, and the Warriors would likely demand a significant return in any trade.

The Warriors are still in contention mode and will be until Curry retires. He’s signed through 2026, and if the Warriors think they can retain Green when his contract is up after next season, they may be unlikely to part with him.

If they don’t want to pay Green, he may want out for greener pastures. That means the Blazers would both need to pay the Warriors a bounty to acquire Green and then give him a big extension.

Age: Green is now 33 years old and has been in the league for nearly a decade. While he is still playing at a high level, his best years may be behind him.

If the Blazers were to acquire Green, they would need to be sure that he can continue to play at a high level for several more seasons. With the Blazers on a Lillard timeline, Green’s age is not a major concern if he can still play his style of ball for a few more years.

The addition of Draymond in Portland could be a game-changer for the Trail Blazers. His defensive intensity, playmaking ability, and championship experience would all be huge assets. However, there are also potential downsides to consider, such as the fit with Lillard, the cost of acquiring him, and his age.

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Ultimately, the Blazers would need to carefully weigh the pros and cons before deciding whether or not to pursue a trade for Green. This likely comes down to whether or not Portland has other options. Acquiring Green would likely be the only major move they could make if they plan to retain Jerami Grant too.