NBA Rumors: Trail Blazers 'Strong Suitor' for Jerami Grant Trade This OffseasonMay 11, 2022
The Portland Trail Blazers are expected to pick up their pursuit of Detroit Pistons forward Jerami Grant this offseason.
Chris Kirschner of The Athletic reported the Blazers are set to be a "strong suitor" for Grant, who will likely be made available for trade.
Portland has been mentioned as a Grant suitor for several months, thanks in large part to his relationship with Damian Lillard. Marc Stein reported last month that the Blazers offered Josh Hart and undisclosed draft compensation for Grant at the deadline but were rebuffed.
The 28-year-old is heading into the final year of a three-year, $60 million contract he signed with the Pistons in 2020. After serving as a role player for his first six NBA seasons, the 6'8", 210-pound forward has averaged 20.9 points and 4.4 rebounds while playing solid perimeter defense over his 101 games in a Pistons uniform. Injuries limited him to 47 games this season.
The Blazers are expected to continue overhauling their roster in hopes of building a competitor around Lillard, who appeared in just 29 games because of an abdominal injury. Lillard shot a career lows of 40.2 percent from the field and 32.4 percent from three as he attempted to play through pain.
Portland essentially tanked the regular season with Lillard on the mend, trading CJ McCollum, Norman Powell, Robert Covington and Larry Nance Jr. The Blazers have only seven players with guaranteed contracts for next season, though they're likely to keep Josh Hart's non-guaranteed $13 million salary on the books and work hard to retain restricted free agent Anfernee Simons.
They are one of a select few teams with meaningful maneuverability in what's largely considered a weak free-agent market.
Adding Grant and his expiring contract could give Portland a player who helps move the team back to competing for a playoff spot while not locking in a long-term deal.