Markkanen would be Cronin's white whale at this year's deadline, but like Ahab, he has no chance of catching him.
Markkanen is averaging 25.1 points and 8.7 rebounds with shooting splits of 50/39/88 in 99 starts since joining the Utah Jazz. As a 7-footer, he would just about complete the Trail Blazers' rebuild in one swing.
Portland would likely need to dangle Sharpe, Grant and at least three of its future first-round picks to even start a conversation with Utah's Danny Ainge, and even that may not be enough. Still, it's tempting - with Scoot and Simons surrounding a jumbo scorer like Markkanen, the Blazers could have one of the most fun and explosive offenses in the league.
The chances that Ainge parts with a 26-year-old all-star and potential all-NBA player are slim to none. But hey, that's why it's a pipe dream.