Here we are once again discussing where Dame Time will end up next season. While nothing new has come out of the Damian Lillard situation in Portland, the trade rumors continue to heat up. I still stand by the fact that he will be a Portland Trail Blazer for at least two more years. However, that does not mean we can’t draw up some trade packages and dream a little bit right? The reality of trading Lillard would mean big-time movement of players, draft picks, etc to bring him in.
While some teams are immediately off the table due to the sheer fact they might have to trade one of their own franchise players, some have plenty to give. Teams like the Oklahoma City Thunder with a treasure trove of draft picks or even the 76ers who are open to moving Ben Simmons. Plenty of options will be on the table for Lillard should Portland decide to let him go. Let’s check out some of the more realistic trade packages for Dame Time.
1.) Philadelphia 76ers
Trade Package: Damian Lillard, Ben Simmons, Tyrese Maxey, a 2021 first-round pick, a 2022 first-round pick swap, and a 2024 first-round pick swap
This trade would make the most sense to me considering the Sixers could pull off the “superstar for superstar” trade. While it is a concern for some times that Ben Simmons seems to have some kind of mental block on basketball lately, he is still a versatile talent. Ben Simmons is a Magic Johnson type player who can do it all on the floor (except shooting the ball), and if Portland is willing to ail his problem, he could help them. Before Lillard being a trade possibility came to about, Philly and Portland already seemed to be interested in a CJ McCollum for Ben Simmons deal. WIth Lillard now a possibility, Philly would have to offer more.
If Philly can include Tyrese Maxey and the pick swaps, this would give Portland room to draft backcourt help. The addition of Maxey would also add more backcourt help. Either way, Portland would need a lot of draft picks to work out otherwise the trade would not be worth it.
2.) Oklahoma City Thunder
Trade Package: Damian Lillard for a 2021 first-round and second-round pick, any 2022-2027 first-round pick
The Thunder have a plethora of draft picks over the next four or five seasons. If OKC is going to make this trade happen, they would almost need to bring in a second superstar alongside Simmons. While OKC did just get Kemba Walker, bringing in Simmons and one other could be an answer to their problems. Portland again would be in need of backcourt help if Lillard leaves. Should OKC ever be in the market for Lillard, they have plenty of first-round picks to dish out.
While Lillard in OKC might not make the sense, OKC is one of the few teams that can guarantee picks in any deal. Whether Portland would be okay with only picks is an entirely different conversation. OKC fans, do not plan on this trade being anywhere close to happening yet though.
3.) Golden State Warriors
Trade package: Damian Lillard for Andrew Wiggins, James Wiseman, Eric Paschall, and 2021 first-round pick (No. 7 pick)
While this package seems like a lot to give up in Golden Stats terms, the long-term profit would be worth it. First, Portland gets elite young talent in Andrew Wiggins as well as all-star hopefuls James Wiseman and Eric Paschall. This haul of young talent would help Portland get back some kind of talent as well as the first-round pick this year for more talent. For Golden State, this deal would clear up around $40 million in cap space which would be enough to bring in Lillard at least short-term.
This package would cost Golden State a lot of their depth. However, if the Warrior’s time to win another title is closing, the win-now mentality is necessary. Damian Lillard would bring in more superstar power to Golden State which is something they are used to. If they can share the rock between Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Kevin Durant, then they can surely find a way with Damian Lillard. This trade again costs a lot but could be worth the immediate impact.
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