Grading the trade for the Portland Trail Blazers
Giving up the best player in franchise history isn't the easiest thing to do. Damian Lillard is top five in most of the Blazers' statistical record leaders. He's played the second-most games and minutes for Portland.
However, all good things must seemingly come to an end. Lillard requested a trade, so the Blazers don't have many options but to grant Lillard's request. After adding numerous draft assets and recently re-signing Jerami Grant in free agency, the Blazers look to be competitive. But trading away Lillard signals the beginning of some sort of rebuild.
In the hypothetical trade, forward Matisse Thybulle would join Lillard as outgoing players, but he would join the Mavs rather than the Heat.
While the Blazers would lose a franchise centerpiece and recent trade deadline acquisition, their roster would receive four quality players.
Tyler Herro is a step above quality and would relieve some of the scoring the Blazers would lose with Lillard's departure. Herro is a fantastic shooter and can realistically play three positions. Although his size doesn't scream forward, he has averaged four or more rebounds per game in every season. Herro could come off the bench or start at either guard or forward.
Next, adding Caleb Martin would provide the Blazers with additional depth and a spot starter at either forward spot. It has been reported that Lillard wants to team up with Martin, but his salary ($6.8 million) and talent are too much to pass up for the Blazers.
Portland would also add Nikola Jovic, a 20-year-old combo forward who has all types of potential. And from Dallas, Portland would receive Richaun Holmes, a capable backup center who would take over Drew Eubanks's now-departed role.
Last but not least, the draft picks Portland would receive is substantial. Giving up Lillard is a tough pill to swallow, but once again, they don't have other options after he requested a trade. Getting two first-round picks and a first-round pick swap is beneficial. Adding a second-rounder from Dallas and future second-rounders from Miami is icing on the cake.
Potential starting lineup: Scoot Henderson, Anfernee Simons, Tyler Herro, Jerami Grant, Jusuf Nurkic
Portland gets a B- for this trade. Although not the best trade for the Blazers, they have to do it. There are no if, ands, or buts about it. Receiving multiple draft picks is crucial, but getting a young player like Herro is equally crucial. This trade also does look leaps and bounds better after the Blazers were able to draft Henderson with the 3rd overall pick in last month's draft.
The Scoot Henderson era starts now.