Saturday, June 07, 2008

New Portland Trade Idea

I spent a good part of the past two days talking shop with a Pistons fan in my office and I am more convinced than ever that Portland and Detroit could get together and make a deal that helps both teams.

Now, I'll be the first to admit that my Blazers trade suggestions below were rather misguided. The Bulls are trying to trade the #1 pick for Dwyane Wade, so I doubt that LaMarcus Aldridge would be enough to fetch the right to draft Derrick Rose. And, as people pointed out, the Suns will have every resource and incentive to keep Amare if (more like when) he opts out in 2010.

So I'm taking a mulligan ... and offering up another risky proposed deal.

This time, I think Chauncey Billups is the guy the Blazers should deal for. His market value is probably as low as it can go after he struggled with nagging injuries in the playoffs and was sort of put on the block by Joe Dumars. I think he can be had, especially when you consider that Rodney Stuckey offers great replacement value at the position for Detroit.

At first, I thought the Blazers would have to give up LaMarcus Aldridge to get Billups - a prospect I could live with as a Blazers fan (again, because of the influx of power forwards coming on the market in the next two years), but the more I look at this, the less necessary that seems. Could a package of Travis Outlaw (would give Detroit a tremendous weapon off the bench and a guy who would back up Prince at the 3 while also logging big minutes at the 4), Joel Przybilla (would have more value starting in Detroit than backing up Oden in Portland), and the #13 pick be enough? Maybe.

The Pistons could then look to move Rasheed Wallace as a second move and - even before acquiring assets in that trade, using draft picks, or spending the midlevel - be able to retool on the fly with a lineup of:

PG - Rodney Stuckey
SG - Rip Hamilton
SF - Tayshaun Prince
PF - Antonio McDyess
C - Joel Przybilla
6th - Travis Outlaw
B - Jason Maxiell
B - Jarvis Hayes
B - Amir Johnson
B - Lindsay Hunter

That's still a top 3-4 team in the East before loading up with all that extra talent.

Meanwhile, the Blazers would add a veteran point guard to their young mix and become more competitive more quickly. With the news that Rudy Fernandez is indeed coming over next year (and seems to have been promised a certain amount of playing time), the Blazers timeline is officially starting. I know Billups seemed a little run down this year, but I suspect he has at least 3-4 good years left and at $10 million a year, he isn't going to break the bank. I'd make a move for him now, try to sign more guy next summer with the cap space, and then just start extending everybody in sight on the way to a $100 million roster. The Blazers would have a lineup of:

PG - Chauncey Billups
SG - Brandon Roy
SF - Martell Webster
PF - LaMarcus Aldridge
C - Greg Oden
6th - Rudy Fernandez
B - Steve Blake
B - James Jones
B - Channing Frye
B - Jarrett Jack

I like the Billups trade for Portland because I just honestly believe that good point guards won't be available very often in the next few years and that if they don't get one, they are going to have a fatal flaw. Also, I think he is a perfect compliment to Roy in that he's more of a finishing point guard than a playmaker, but can share in those duties and give them a post-up heavy backcourt that will be murder on mismatches.

So what do you say ... is this a better idea than the last round of trade offerings, or have I officially lost my mind?


Anonymous said...

you are officially out of your mind if you think a 33 year old not named MJ is worth one of the top young PFs in the west and Portland's only decent (non guard) outside shooter from
when you mentioned a 1st rnd pick you lost my respect.
seriously, detroit would give up billups for 8 million and new speakers so they can pump sound in to their newly deflated arena.

Mike said...

I like this trade.

Nice comment above - Billups is 31, not 33. And who is this top young power forward? Outlaw? The trade specifically did NOT include L.A., so I know you can't be talking about him. And who is the outside shooter? In fact, WTF are you talking about?

Outlaw, Przybilla, and the pick for Billups seems about right.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I love the trade too. Although I might prefer to keep the pick and use one of our other non-core players instead, Jarrett Jack or Steve Blake or something. I like the pick to get Brandon Rush.