Hi fellow Blazers fans! Gordon here, I've been a 'ghost' around here for the longest time just reading the various posts by the site writers and fellow fans and recently decided to created an account for myself.
With all the numerous posts regarding possible moves by the Blazers with our cap space (presumably 12 - 14 million), I decided to chip in with my own fantasy GM ideas just for fun.
Before I get into my Olshey mode, let me list down my objectives for the team:
1) Interior defense: It's obvious the team leading the league in opponents FG% in the paint (44.7%) needs interior help so thats one of our main priorities
2) Shooters, more shooters! Both team in the Finals this year are 2nd (Heat) and 4th (Spurs) in 3P%. We were 21st so we definitely need some help in this department, especially on the bench, which brings me to the third point
3) DEPTH, enough said
4) Alternative ball handlers. Maynor was a great addition because he was able to put some pressure off Dame. Nic has developed a role as a 2nd and 3rd ball handler but we can certainly be more versatile
With the 10th Pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, The Portland Trailblazers SELECT:
4 year men out of college, the Damian Lillard comparison are inevitable, however, I don't expect him to be an all world point guard. He'll slot in perfectly into the Eric Maynor role, spelling Dame at the point position and occasionally sharing the court with him as a 2. Played only 12 games last season due to injury but was extremely efficient (albeit against not so great competition in the Patriot League). He might be drafted before us but my fingers are crossed that he'll be available at 10
Trade Pick 39 & 40 for a late first round pick and SELECT:
A 3 that can shoot lights out from 3, plays adequate defense and always plays within himself, perfect for the bench and to provide competition for Victor.
Pick 45 SELECT:
Solid backup 4 with size and length to give us something different off the bench.
With the draft settled, we are due around 3-4 million from the cap space for al the rookies. Objective wise, we've contributed to points number 2,3 and 4. Let's presume we're left with 9 million in cap space for free agency.
SIGN Jermaine O'Neal
2 Year 4 Million (2nd Year partially guaranteed)
He started for Boston two years back, but can he start for us without having persistent injury problems? This is going to be a gamble for us but I'm a believer in Meyers Leonard being our future starting center. Minutes will be shared between O'Neal, Leonard and Freeland. Leonard minutes will increase to preserve O'Neal so this will be a huge year for Meyers. We always say to give young centers time but with the brutal nature of this league, if Meyers doesn't start producing, he's gonna get the bust label pretty soon. (joining Byron Mullens, Cole Aldrich and many others). An alternative is Sam Dalembert but he might be more expensive than JO
SIGN JJ Redick
3 Year 21 Million (3rd Year Team Option)
Shooter off the bench, would be the spark we need, can create his own shot, run the offense. Very underrated player.
Two different bigs with different styles of play, I would go with Tolliver
As far as I'm concern, maintaining "financial flexibility" is all fine and dandy but as a 'small market' team there's really no point in maintaining plenty of cap space every summer. Not that I'm saying we should attack Paul Allen's wallet and overspend every summer but I feel that the only way this team is going to succeed is through good drafting, player development and signing veterans that complement our players. With that, I prefer to you my 2013/2014 Trail Blazers!
Championship? Nop Playoffs? I think it's very much possible. Very much will depend on the development of our young players (Dame, Leonard, Barton) but I feel that our team has the potential to be really exciting ~