As free agency approaches, the news and rumors around the tense situation between the Portland Trail Blazers and star point guard Damian Lillard continue to swirl. Marc Stein writes in his Substack newsletter that though teams have been asking, the Blazers are unlikely to deal Lillard.
For all the undeniable tension in the Pacific Northwest, neither Portland nor Lillard is ready to entertain trade possibilities … certainly not while Lillard is in Tokyo trying to focus on the Olympics.
Stein also says that despite the fact that the Blazers would like to move CJ McCollum for an asset like Philadelphia 76ers Ben Simmons, it is also unlikely to happen because Daryl Morey wants Damian Lillard.
Philadelphia continues to ask for a massive return in its attempts to construct a Simmons trade. To illustrate: There were ill-founded suggestions circulating earlier this week that the 76ers were warming to the idea of a potential deal with Portland in which CJ McCollum landed in Philadelphia as the prime acquisition from the Blazers. It was made clear, when I checked it out, that Lillard remains the Trail Blazer coveted by Sixers president of basketball operations Daryl Morey. The Sixers know they have to get this right and keep insisting that they are determined not to rush into anything.
Right now, all eyes are on point guards around the league, and you can read Stein’s newsletter on that topic here.