The Portland Trail Blazers have spent about a week since Damian Lillard requested a trade, and even though there’s a lot of chatter about what could happen, there have been more words than actions.
General manager Joe Cronin spoke with reporters today and Rose Garden Report’s Sean Highkin explains that he has not spoken much with the Miami Heat, Lillard’s preferred destination, about a trade.
Joe Cronin says he has not spoken to Damian Lillard since the trade request and there has not been any meaningful movement on trade talks.
Cronin re-iterated in his press conference that he tried to build a winner around Lillard, but was ultimately unable to find players that would suffice.
Joe Cronin: “Building around Dame has always been the goal, even through the draft. The difficulty we ran into was finding the right deals. We kept scouring the market looking for more win-now players, and those players just weren’t available.”
Cronin also acknowledges that not finding a trade was a failure on his part and that he takes responsibility for not finding a deal to help the Blazers win now.
Joe Cronin: “I don’t feel that I did everything I could because I didn’t get done what I needed to get done. In that sense, I do feel like I failed Dame. Our goal was to win now as quickly as possible. If he didn’t feel that way, it was a failure on my end.
But without a deal to help Dame, Cronin must now find one that will shape the Blazers’ future. However, he neglected to identify what that future looks like.
Joe Cronin: “In any deal, the goal is to come out with the best outcome. It could be more of a win-now player. It could be a young player and picks. It could be just picks. There’s no set parameters.”
He also said that this is not something that the Blazers are going to rush.
Joe Cronin: “We’re going to be patient. If it takes months, it takes months.”
The press conference appeared to be a confirmation of what Blazers fans already knew from beat reporters and media heads. Buckle up, Blazers fans. It’s going to be one very long, painful summer.