Welcome to SB Nation Reacts, a survey of fans across the NBA. Throughout the year we ask questions of the most plugged-in Portland Trail Blazers fans and fans across the country.
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The Portland Trail Blazers have shown flashes of brilliance throughout the season, though hampered by injuries to Damian Lillard and Gary Payton II of note. Adding two-way scorer Jerami Grant has equipped Rip City with three viable 20-plus point per game scorers. Yet, the Blazers still have some holes in their attack. Would trading budding star Anfernee Simons address these issues or plunge Portland to the bottom of the standings?
The last major trade catalyzed by the Trail Blazers’ front office sent beloved guard CJ McCollum to the New Orleans Pelicans for Josh Hart and a cast of players no longer on the team. The acclaimed duo of Lillard and McCollum ran their course, and trading the Lehigh product created enough space for Simons to ascend and Grant to come in and produce.
Impressively, Simons has answered the bell in 2022-23. In addition to shooting 38 percent from 3-point range and nearly 90 percent from the line, he has been the hero in more than one second-half comeback this season. Through much of the year, he was the most efficient shooter from the left 3-point wing.
As good as he has been, Portland as a team ranks No. 17 in defensive rating and has struggled taking care of the ball on the offensive end. They rank bottom-seven in face value stats such as steals (No. 25), and blocks (No. 24), and struggle to force turnovers (No. 23).
Is it worth trading an apparent future all-star to upgrade the defense and potentially add length? Is it worth potentially diminishing an elite 3-point shooting team and breaking up a clutch-time cast that has all proven to deliver down the stretch to compensate for deficiencies elsewhere? Let us know what you think in the survey above.