In any deal involving Anthony Davis, most people expected the New Orleans Pelicans to demand young players and future draft picks to help them speed up the rebuilding process. However, like what the San Antonio Spurs and the Toronto Raptors did last summer, there is also a strong possibility that the Pelicans will consider engaging in a superstar-for-superstar trade to remain competitive in the deep Western Conference.
Regarding that type of deal, one of the potential trade partners for the Pelicans is the Portland Trail Blazers. According to Complex, the Pelicans could trade Anthony Davis to the Trail Blazers for a trade packaged centered on C.J. McCollum.
“As Davis is used to carrying a team, Damian Lillard has had the Blazers on his back since he entered the league out of Weber State. Yes, they have a dynamic backcourt with Lillard and CJ McCollum, this overachieving Portland team could level up by swapping stars (and kicking in a role player or two) with New Orleans. Dame and AD on the same team would be lethal. The idea Jusuf Nurkic as a big that allows Davis to play on the perimeter, draws all rim protectors out of the paint and creates ball movement that is otherwise lacking with current Blazers group.”
Warriors-Pelicans cheatsheet: MVP hopeful Anthony Davis looking to wreck Golden State’s good vibes https://t.co/OOsEQwRrXA— Mercury News (@mercnews) January 17, 2019
Despite having the explosive backcourt duo of Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, the Trail Blazers are not considered a legitimate title contender in the Western Conference. Lillard and McCollum may have carried to the Trail Blazers to the Western Conference Playoffs for five straight years, but their only greatest achievement was reaching the Western Conference Semifinals. Since the 2018 NBA offseason, rumors have been swirling around Portland that they are planning to make a huge roster shakeup before the February NBA trade deadline.
If Anthony Davis will become available on the trading block, the Trail Blazers should immediately make a call to the Pelicans’ front office. Pairing Davis with Damian Lillard will undeniably make the Trail Blazers a much better team. Davis will tremendously improve the Trail Blazers’ performance on both ends of the floor.
This season, the 25-year-old center/power forward is averaging 29.4 points, 13.3 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 2.6 blocks, and 1.8 steals on 51.1 percent shooting from the field and 32.8 percent shooting from beyond the arc. With his ability to knock down three-pointers and play in the power forward position, Anthony Davis won’t have a hard time sharing the Trail Blazers’ frontcourt with center Jusuf Nurkic.
Meanwhile, most NBA fans will surely be intrigued to know how C.J. McCollum will perform when he moves out of the shadow of Damian Lillard. In New Orleans, McCollum could replace Anthony Davis as the new face of the franchise. Despite losing Davis, the Pelicans’ core of McCollum, Jrue Holiday, Nikola Mirotic, and Julius Randle will still be able to compete for a playoff spot in the deep Western Conference.