As a die-hard fan of the Portland Trail Blazers, I have been pondering the team's future direction. For years, I firmly believed that Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum were the key to our success. But after several disappointing playoff runs, it's clear that having two undersized scoring guards just isn't enough to make it in the playoffs.
Now, history seems to be repeating itself with Anfernee Simons and Lillard. While I love their individual games, it's evident that their defensive capabilities together aren't enough to take us to the next level. As a result, I believe the Blazers have three options moving forward.
Option 1: Is to stay loyal to Lillard and bring in another star ready to win now. This would involve trading Simons, Sharpe, and picks. Some names that come to mind are Bam, Butler, Siakam, OG, Turner, Simmons, KAT, and even the biggest name, Embiid. While the latter may seem like a long shot, we could offer Sharpe, Simons, and as many picks as possible to get him. Maybe he's available if the 76ers have another lackluster playoff performance
Option 2: Is to move on from Lillard, Jerami Grant, and Jusuf Nurkic and build with Sharpe and Simons in mind. This would involve finding a way to get value for Lillard, either by trading him for young players or picks. We could even go after players like Scottie Barnes or even Zion (if the Pelicans were willing to consider it).
Option 3: Is a mix of both. We could keep Lillard and Sharpe, hoping that the latter progresses quickly on both offense and defense. In this scenario, we would look to move Simons as a centerpiece to get a player like OG or Myles. One more year of Sharpe in development plus OG or Turner could be enough to move the needle.
Personally, I'm torn between options 1 and 2. While it's important to do right by Lillard, I believe that trading him, Grant, and Nurkic and starting over with Sharpe and Simons may be the more sound approach. It may take some time, but with the right moves, we could find ourselves back in contention sooner than later. What do you think the Blazers should do?