Your daily (Mon-Fri) roundup of links from around the blogosphere, typically Trail Blazers related.
- Casey Holdahl and Dave Deckard discuss the draft, Rudy’s discontent, and Nate McMillan in the latest TrailBlazers.com podcast.
- Coup from Rip City Project assigns Nicolas Batum some homework. Nicolas, if you are reading this, whatever the hell you did last summer, do it again!
- Brian Berger of Sports Business Radio talks money and mortality in Paul Allen’s turn under the microscope in OregonLive’s “You be the GM” series.
- Notorious homer Tommy Heinsohn is not happy with the physicality of the Orlando Magic. In response, Ron Borges of The Boston Herald wants Shelden Williams to hurt Dwight Howard.
- I’m not sure if I can explain the satisfaction I am getting from the idea that the Celtics are being bulled. The Celtics have played very physically over the last few years, they have slapped, and hit, and clawed, and bullied, and taunted. I love the idea that the Orlando Magic have gotten inside Boston’s collective head. That type of edge is what is required to be the first team to fight their way out of a 3-0 hole, and to fight for a championship in general. I hope the Trail Blazers are paying close attention.
- I told ya’ll ZBo don’t pass. Zach Randolph is not the focus of either investigation that recently mentioned him. Instead, the investigations are targeting members of Randolph’s disreputable entourage, the “Hoops Family.”
- Let’s talk about moving up in the draft. The difficulty with moving up this year is that somewhere around half the NBA will enter free agency this year. Everyone has been clearing the books for “The Summer of James/Bosh/Wade” This means that a lot of the players that would normally be put into a trade are expiring instead and a lot of teams are not interested in taking back much salary.
If history serves as a teacher, Portland can likely buy a pick worse than their own for the requisite “cash considerations.” The Hawks pick at #24 seems to be the best opportunity to buy a pick which can be packaged with the #22 pick to move up if Portland is so inclined. Memphis has the #25 and #28 either of which I could see being traded for Portland’s second round pick (and it’s unguaranteed contract) and the change from Paul Allen’s couch.
The assets the Blazers have to use are Rudy Fernandez, Martell Webster, Joel Przybilla, Jeff Pendergraph, Dante Cunningham, and (somewhat unlikely) Jerryd Bayless.
Rudy is hard to trade by himself for a player because his contract is so small. However, since Rudy’s contract is so small, he could easily be traded to a team with cap space for a 1.24 million trade exception. If a team would trade cap space and a pick for Rudy, cash, and maybe a pick, Portland might consider that.
Joel Przybilla’s contract will be expiring, but this is the summer that all the expiring contracts were expiring for, so it may not hold as much appeal. Joel is injured and no one knows when he will be back so he’d likely only be traded to take on a worse contract with more years.
I do not think Portland will trade Jerryd Bayless. Bayless provides great value for his contract and I don’t see an obvious replacement in the draft. Likewise, I don’t see anyone another team would trade that is significantly better than Bayless.
What do you think might happen? Give us your best guess in the comments.