2. The Los Angeles Lakers trade for Jusuf Nurkic
Any Blazers fan reading this article might spit out whatever they are drinking when they see this package. Jusuf Nurkic is a solid basketball player and when your team is going to trade someone you expect to get the absolute best packages for them.
While this is not the best package for a quality starting center, there are multiple things that factor into this that actually make this trade possible for the Los Angeles Lakers. The first is what Nurkic offers and his recent track record.
Nurkic is a traditional center for the most part. He is someone who is consistently going to get you 10 points and 10 boards a game. He is not someone who is going to space the floor but he will provide a solid presence near the rim with some athleticism.
There are just not a lot of contending teams that are going to want to trade for that. The market just is not there, especially considering Nurkic has been injury-prone the last two seasons. It is hard to see there being a lot of teams calling for Nurkic, giving the Lakers a chance to improve with this trade.
This is not a trade that significantly increases the team’s playoff chances but it does give them a much better outlook at the center position than either Dwight Howard or DeAndre Jordan. Plus, it also opens up an additional two roster spots to use on potential buyout guys.
And the cherry on the top is the fact that Jusuf Nurkic is a Klutch client. We know how Klutch clients have flexed their muscles in the past and Nurkic can make it very clear that he has zero intentions of re-signing with Portland after this season and wants to go to the Lakers.
If Damian Lillard was playing and the Blazers had a chance to make some noise they would never do this. Instead, this now becomes a possibility.