The trade: Pistons get better, Blazers get what now?
Detroit is the worst team in the NBA. Like by a lot. The Pistons have lost 24 straight games.
James L. Edwards III of The Athletic recently tried to come up with some moves that would stop the franchise's epic slide that's approaching worst-losing-streak-in-league-history territory. One of them included Portland, and it looked like this:
The allure of this trade is easy to see from a Detroit perspective. The Pistons, who have bucked recent NBA trends and loaded their roster with centers, deal from a position of strength and swap out underwhelming, aging players for two who would help win games immediately.
A trio of future second-rounders is a small price to pay to sweeten the deal.
Edwards justifies the Blazers' disappointing return by citing Grant's contract that, admittedly, isn't great. The 29-year-old is just beginning a five-year, $160 million extension and will be in his early 30s at least by the time Portland is ready to contend again:
"You don’t really see contracts like the one Grant got anymore, not from players who aren’t A-listers or haven’t been with an organization from the beginning. There is great risk in taking on a five-year contract for a non-superstar player. ... The Pistons can provide Portland with an out of the Grant contract and flexibility for next season, while Detroit gets the exact type of forward it needs."- James L. Edwards III, The Athletic
None of what Edwards wrote is inherently wrong. But this deal presents major issues for the Blazers.