The biggest trade of the offseason happened at the very end of the offseason as the Portland Trail Blazers finally moved on from Damian Lillard, trading him to the Milwaukee Bucks as part of a three-team deal. Portland received Jrue Holiday, Deandre Ayton, and other assets for the trade. Holiday specifically should be someone who piques the Los Angeles Lakers’ interest.
It is inevitable that Holiday will eventually be re-routed to another team and as it stands right now, the Lakers are viewed as an impossible suitor. Los Angeles can’t even trade the proper contracts until December and Portland may want to move on from Holiday sooner rather than later.
While it might not be possible right now, the Lakers should not be slept on as a potential team that could trade Holiday in the future. They are by no means the favorites but they should be respected as a potential dark horse.
Why Jrue Holiday could actually be traded to the Los Angeles Lakers:
First, we have to look around at the teams throughout the league that would want to trade for Holiday. The Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors will struggle to make the money match and actually give Portland something worth having. Golden State has young players like Jonathan Kuminga, but no real contract that make sense. The Clippers are filled with in-between filler contracts that do nothing for Portland (while having most of the team’s picks tied up).
Boston has Malcolm Brogdon but that doesn’t solve much for Portland. Plus, Boston would have to attach another contract or two to make the money work and it is hard to see a path where that happens.
Miami could be interested but Portland already turned down their offer for Dame, so there may not be a path to those two teams doing business for Holiday. New Orleans doesn’t seem likely to re-acquire Holiday and other contenders like Phoenix and Denver don’t have the teams.
Philly would love to flip James Harden for Jrue Holiday why would the Blazers ever do that? Sure, they could include a third team like the Clippers but then we are back to square one.
All the Blazers have done this offseason is show the rest of the NBA that they are willing to be patient and not make a trade right away for the sake of making a trade. For that reason, it isn’t unfathomable that Holiday could still be on the Blazers on December 15 once the Lakers can trade for him.
And in perfect fashion, the package of D’Angelo Russell, Rui Hachimura and Jalen Hood-Schifino adds up to $36.7 million. Holiday’s salary is $36.8 million. Throw in some picks and some business could be done.