LA Clippers Could Swap Paul George & Ivica Zubac For CJ McCollum & Jusuf Nurkic, Per 'Bleacher Report'

CJ McCollum trying to score against Paul George
Gettyimages | Cooper Neill
Basketball

The 2020-21 NBA season is still far from over, but several crazy trade ideas have already started surfacing in the league. These include the hypothetical blockbuster deal between the Los Angeles Clippers and the Portland Trail Blazers involving superstars Paul George and CJ McCollum and big men Ivica Zubac and Jusuf Nurkic.

In the proposed trade scenario by Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report, the Clippers would be sending a package that includes George, Zubac, and Luke Kennard to the Trail Blazers in exchange for McCollum, Nurkic, Robert Covington, and a 2023 first-round pick.

Three Conditions Before Trade Happens

Paul George trying to block CJ McCollum
Gettyimages | Steve Dykes

In his article, Buckley listed three conditions that need to be met for the Clippers and the Trail Blazers to consider making the proposed blockbuster trade in the 2021 offseason. First, both teams would need to suffer a first-round elimination in the 2021 Playoffs and feel the urge to make a major roster overhaul. Second, Kawhi Leonard decides to re-sign with the Clippers and gives them the blessing to trade George.

Third, Damian Lillard gives the Trail Blazers the go signal to move McCollum and assures them that there's no bad blood existing between him and George.

Proposed Blockbuster Trade Makes Sense For Clippers & Trail Blazers

If the three boxes are checked, the proposed blockbuster trade would be franchise-altering moves for the Clippers and the Trail Blazers. Though Clippers head coach Tyronn Lue and Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts would still need to make certain adjustments to accommodate their new players to their team, the suggested deal would undoubtedly help Los Angeles and Portland fill up the needs to improve on their roster and make them a more competitive team in the Western Conference in the 2021-22 NBA season.

Clippers Improve Championship Core Around Kawhi Leonard

Kawhi Leonard finding his way into the basket
Gettyimages | Douglas P. DeFelice

If they once again fail to achieve their main goal this season, it would only make sense for the Clippers to try making a huge roster overhaul around Leonard this summer. Though they would be giving up the best player in the proposed trade, Buckley believes that the acquisition of McCollum and Nurkic would improve the Clippers' shot-creation and playmaking.

McCollum would be an intriguing fit alongside Leonard since, unlike George, he's capable of excelling in an off-ball capacity. Also, the departure of George won't greatly hurt the Clippers' wing since they still have Marcus Morris Sr. and would be acquiring Covington in the potential deal.

Trail Blazers Give Damian Lillard New Superstar Teammate

Paul George driving into the basket
Gettyimages | Mike Ehrmann

Meanwhile, for the Trail Blazers, the proposed blockbuster trade wouldn't only enable them to give Lillard a new superstar running mate in George, but it would also bring a significant improvement with their defensive efficiency that ranks No. 29 in the league, allowing 113.4 points per 100 possessions, per ESPN.

"The Blazers would give overdue attention to their fatally flawed 29th-ranked defense," Buckley wrote. "Their years-long search for two-way wings might be over in an instant with George in town and Norman Powell potentially back in free agency (after a presumed opt-out). Between Zubac and another big (maybe a re-signed Enes Kanter or Zach Collins), Portland may not lose much on the interior, and it would gain a perimeter scorer in Luke Kennard."