Portland should trade Simons for Pascal Siakam
The Trail Blazers have excelled at drafting, developing and deploying guards over the past dozen years, starting with Lillard and CJ McCollum and continuing to Gary Trent Jr., Simons, and Sharpe.
Where they have struggled is drafting forwards.
They traded McCollum for the trade exception that became Grant, and they could make another guard-for-forward swap this summer. The ideal complement to Grant’s shooting and defense would be a forward with size, passing and interior scoring; that sounds like a recipe for “Spicy P”.
Pascal Siakam has blossomed into a two-time All-NBA combo forward with the Raptors, cutting his teeth under DeMar DeRozan and Kawhi Leonard before stepping up into a leading role. He has a surprisingly good off-the-dribble game, good passing instincts and the strength to finish inside. Defensively he isn’t elite, but he can function well as the second frontcourt option alongside Grant.
The question becomes whether the Raptors will move Siakam for a package involving Simons without the No. 3 pick being involved. Can the Blazers send the No. 23 pick, Jarace Walker and some future draft capital to get it done? Probably not, so the question becomes whether the No. 3 pick can be in play.
Siakam looks like a great addition to the team, but would he elevate them into contender status?