Portland Trail Blazers forward Justise Winslow may have a suitor for his services should the Blazers make him available in trade in the coming season. Sean Deveny of The Heavy has quoted an NBA Assistant Coach saying the Boston Celtics might have interest in the 6’6, 26-year-old forward. The report is interesting as much for the assessments it contains about the Trail Blazers as the actual availability of Winslow.
The article begins by establishing Boston’s interest, presumably using an outstanding trade exception to deal for Winslow. The trade is predicated on the Blazers not doing well this season, being willing to offload players as the year progresses. This is where the article gets interesting for Blazers fans.
When Heavy’s Sean Deveney asked a Western Conference assistant coach about Winslow’s potential fit in Boston, the coach said that Winslow would fit better in a lesser role on a good team.
“Winslow makes sense as a fourth or fifth wing off the bench on a good team but not on a team that is probably a 10 or 11 seed.”
The assistant coach added that Winslow’s current team, the Portland Trail Blazers, doesn’t look like a winning team at the moment, which may impact his trade availability if things go south.
“You look at that roster and, they’re trying to win but it doesn’t look like they’re good enough especially if (Damian) Lillard is not back to his old self,” the assistant coach said. “If they start selling off pieces, he’d be one of the first to go.”
Despite the pessimism about Portland’s chances, the article affirms that the Blazers still like Winslow and believe he can bring something to the table.
While talking with Deveney, the assistant coach added that the Trail Blazers liked what Winslow did when he played for them and that Portland could stand to benefit from what he brings defensively alongside their other wing defenders.
“They liked what he did there last year, and if you put him with (Gary) Payton off the bench, that is a really good pair of defenders on the wing in your second unit,” the assistant coach said. “Chauncey (Billups) really likes him, so that might keep him around.”
Winslow averaged 10.7 points and 6.3 rebounds per game in 26.8 minutes over 11 appearances with the Blazers last season. He shot 40.5% from the floor.