Sitting in 11th place in the West just 0.5-game back of the play-in tournament, the Blazers could decide that their “retooling” experiment isn’t working. But that doesn’t seem likely.
The Blazers committed to contending by extending Damian Lillard and trading for Jerami Grant in the offseason. Portland sits just nine games back of first place in the West, which shows how tight things are in the conference.
Fanspo recently proposed a deal that would continue the trajectory of talent feeding into Portland in a trade with the Utah Jazz.
In the trade, the Blazers acquire Jarred Vanderbilt from the Utah Jazz for a first-round pick in 2025.
Vanderbilt was acquired by the Jazz in the deal that sent Rudy Gobert to the Minnesota Timberwolves last summer. He is averaging 8.5 points and 8.1 rebounds this season.
The Jazz are currently in the thick of things in the West at 21-23, but Utah is trending towards a rebuild and has been over-performing. The Jazz has more of an eye towards the future, which would give an explanation as to why the team would pull the trigger here.
Vanderbilt adds value for this season as a backup big and flexibility for the rotation. He can play next to Jusuf Nurkic as a power forward if the team wants to go big or can play center if the lineup goes small.
BE community, what do you think of this trade? Would you do it if you’re Joe Cronin? Chime off in the comments below!