NBA Rumors: CJ McCollum Could Complete Nets’ ‘Big 3’ With Kevin Durant & Kyrie Irving, Per ‘Bleacher Report’

After the successful acquisition of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving last summer, the Brooklyn Nets have managed to turn themselves from an average playoff team to a legitimate title contender in the Eastern Conference. However — though they have yet to see their current roster at full strength — rumors continue to swirl that the Nets are looking to add another superstar to their team in the 2020 NBA offseason. According to Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report, one of the Nets’ potential trade targets is CJ McCollum of the Portland Trail Blazers.

The 2019-20 NBA season is still far from over, but if the Trail Blazers suffer a huge disappointment, Swartz believes they may finally decide to break up the explosive backcourt duo of McCollum and Damian Lillard. With Lillard currently considered the face of the franchise, McCollum is the more likely trade candidate for Portland this summer. To acquire a player of McCollum’s caliber, the Nets should be willing to make a “Godfather offer” to the Trail Blazers.

In the proposed trade deal by Bleacher Report, Brooklyn would be sending a package that included Caris LeVert, Taurean Prince, and a 2020 first-round pick to the Trail Blazers in exchange for McCollum. For the deal to work under league rules, the Nets would need to offer more players to match the Trail Blazers’ outgoing salary.

Trading away a young and promising talent like LeVert would undeniably be a tough decision for Brooklyn, but it would definitely be worth it if it means acquiring a player like McCollum. As Swartz noted, the shooting guard would complete the “Nets Trio,” giving them a very reliable scoring option behind Durant and Irving. This season, the 28-year-old is averaging 22.5 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 4.3 assists, while shooting 45.3 percent from the field and 38.0 percent from beyond the arc. With the years he spent with Lillard, McCollum has learned how to efficiently play in an off-ball capacity, making him an ideal fit alongside ball-dominant superstars like Durant and Irving.

If the trade becomes a reality, it would be beneficial for both teams. In exchange for McCollum, the Trail Blazers would be acquiring players that could help them remain competitive in the 2020-21 NBA season. LeVert would give Portland a young and promising talent who could be Lillard’s new backcourt partner or their starting small forward. Prince would address the Trail Blazers’ need of a defensive-minded and floor-spacing big man, while the future first-round pick would allow them to restock their talent pool.

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