It has been one week since CJ McCollum opened up the imagination of Trail Blazers fans by hinting that Portland should pursue a trade involving the Pacers forward Paul George this summer. The former Lehigh standout further stoked the fire when he chatted with SportsNet New York’s Taylor Rooks earlier this week.
McCollum touched on the competitiveness of the Western Conference as the main reason why the Blazers would benefit from adding a player of George’s caliber to their already talented roster.
He gives you that star power. You’re in the Western Conference. Obviously there’s a lot of very good teams. A lot of teams that are deep. A lot of teams that have three, four horsemen. Some teams have five. And you have to be able to match them blow for blow.
He goes on to reinforce the same theme; perhaps implying that it could take more than a core of Damian Lillard, Jusuf Nurkic, and himself for Portland to crack the NBA’s elite.
It takes a lot more than one good player, two good players, three good players. You need to have a collective unit. Obviously, Paul George would help any team in the NBA.
Prying George away from the Pacers would be a major coup for the Blazers, putting the potential deal closer to the side of unrealistic than an actual option for Portland’s President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey.
George’s future prospects should become less murky after the league officially announces its All-NBA teams later this offseason. If George makes his way on to that list, he will be eligible for a massive contract extension from Indiana, making a possible trade even more unlikely.