The Portland Trail Blazers and Miami Heat have been linked in trade rumors regarding Damian Lillard, but Rip City may look to play their “Reverse Uno” card on the reigning Eastern Conference champions.
According to Yahoo! Sports insider Jake Fischer, the Blazers are eyeing a trade for Heat center Bam Adebayo, not in exchange for Lillard but to team up with in Portland.
Portland has been exploring avenues to deal the No. 3 pick, but in a draft that scouts have deemed holds three top prospects, the Blazers are strongly valuing their selection in talks with opposing teams, sources said. Portland appears unlikely to part with the No. 3 choice unless the Blazers are netting back one of a select number of premium targets to pair with Lillard. According to one source with knowledge of the situation, Portland is preparing what the team believes to be a compelling package for Miami to part with All-Defensive centerpiece Bam Adebayo.
The package would likely include Anfernee Simons, Shaedon Sharpe and this year’s No. 3 overall pick, which is compelling. However, the Heat appear unlikely to trade Adebayo, especially given his role in Miami’s two Finals appearances in the last four years.
He and Lillard played together for Team USA in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and have developed a close friendship, but the Heat have primarily searched to supplement Adebayo in recent transaction cycles, sources said, and have not pondered a future without him starring in the frontcourt.
The Blazers remain committed to finding an elite running mate for Lillard to team up with in Portland, and the team will look far and wide to find that player. However, with the NBA Draft just days away, the clock is ticking.