As the 2020 offseason goes deeper, several interesting trade ideas have started surfacing in the NBA. These include the blockbuster deal involving the Golden State Warriors and the Portland Trail Blazers that would send All-Star point guard Damian Lillard to the Bay Area. In the proposed trade scenario from Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report, the Warriors would be acquiring Lillard and Trevor Ariza in exchange for a package that includes Andrew Wiggins, Jordan Poole, Eric Paschall, Kevon Looney, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, first-round selections in 2021 and 2026.
The suggested deal would make a lot of sense for the Warriors as it would fulfill their dream of turning Wiggins and their own 2020 lottery pick into another legitimate superstar. Buckley admitted that there would be “positional questions” regarding the potential acquisition of Lillard since he plays the same position as Stephen Curry. However, if Lillard, Curry, and Klay Thompson find the perfect chemistry, Buckley believes that the Warriors would be unstoppable on the offensive end of the floor.
“There would be obvious (and significant) defensive question marks, but what exactly is the defensive method for slowing down Lillard, Curry and Klay Thompson?…Exactly. If Draymond Green and Trevor Ariza meet their typical standards, why couldn’t this be the latest Death Lineup reboot? It seems a little ludicrous, but you don’t stay light years ahead of the competition by thinking inside the box. Having Curry or Lillard run endless pick-and-rolls while the other spots up opposite Thompson would be a living nightmare for opposing coaches.”
Most fans would likely be intrigued to see Lillard form a fearsome foursome with Curry, Thompson, and Draymond Green in Golden State. Their current roster may already be enough to bring the Warriors back to the playoffs in the 2020-21 season, but if they add Lillard, it could give them a better chance of beating LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers in a best-of-seven series.
Ariza wasn’t included as mere salary-cap filler. Though he’s already on the downside of his career, he remains a reliable contributor on both ends of the floor. Ariza will immediately fill the hole left by Wiggins at the small forward position, giving them a 3-and-D wingman who has championship experience.
As of now, it’s hard to imagine the Trail Blazers parting ways with Lillard this fall. However, the proposed deal could be beneficial for them if they realize that they likely won’t win a title with the explosive backcourt duo of Lillard and CJ McCollum and finally decide to take a different route. In exchange for the face of the franchise, Portland would be receiving four young and promising talents in Wiggins, Paschall, Poole, and Looney, and three first-rounders that would help them speed up the rebuilding process.