The Portland Trail Blazers have a new GM in town, and he recently made his first trade when he sent Jerryd Bayless to the New Orleans Hornets in exchange for a first round draft pick and a trade exception.
On the outside, that seems like a really boring deal that no one outside the Blazers and Hornets took notice of.
But the Trail Blazers have acquired two valuable assets that are always needed in superstar deals. A first round pick and a trade exception.
Just look at what the Utah Jazz did with their trade exception and you'll see that it is very valuable. You can end up getting someone like Al Jefferson if you're lucky to be dealing with David Kahn.
Now I know that the Trail Blazers exception isn't as large as Utah's was, but it can still help a lot if you're trying to acquire someone really good.
The Trail Blazers only weakness in their starting lineup is the point guard spot. Andre Miller isn't a bad player, he just isn't suited to play in the Trail Blazers half-court offense without the ball in his hands. This was even more evident in the Trail Blazers season opener.
Whenever Aldridge was given the ball in the post against Hedo Turkoglu, the Phoenix Suns immediately sent a double team his way.
This left Miller open in a lot of possessions. The bad thing is that he passed up open jumpers because he isn't capable of making them consistently. This is why the Trail Blazers don't seem to be investing in him long-term. Well, that, and he's 34 years old.
The Trail Blazers are trying to get a superstar point guard like Chris Paul, and it would be ironic if they returned that draft pick they got from them and received Chris Paul.
I feel, however, that even a player like Chris Paul is not suited to play alongside another ball handling player like Brandon Roy.
I don't think that either of these players is selfish, but having two guys together who dominate the ball a lot normally is still unproven.
Traditionally, when you have a superstar player at the two guard spot, GMs tend to go after a role player point guard to put alongside him. This enables the superstar to handle the ball at most times and pass it to the point guard when he's double teamed.
This formula has worked to the tune of five championships for the Lakers in the last decade. It is a proven strategy and rarely fails.
However, there are still teams who have succeeded recently with two scoring guards in the backcourt. I mean Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker. Sure, Tim Duncan was the undoubted leader of the team, but they still managed to grab three championships with that backcourt.
Overall, I think adding a Chris Paul type player to any franchise in this league would benefit that team greatly, I''m just not sure the egos of the other players in the franchise can handle the spotlight fading away from them.