Blazers Rumors: Jerami Grant Trade for No. 7 Pick Unlikely; Shaedon Sharpe Eyed

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIJune 21, 2022

DETROIT, MI - MARCH 23: Jerami Grant #9 of the Detroit Pistons shoots the ball during the game against the Atlanta Hawks on March 23, 2022 at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Chris Schwegler/NBAE via Getty Images)
Chris Schwegler/NBAE via Getty Images

The NBA draft rumor mill has circulated with talk that the Portland Trail Blazers were interested in dealing the No. 7 overall pick for a veteran, such as Detroit Pistons forward Jerami Grant.

However, ESPN's Brian Windhorst reported Tuesday on NBA Today (0:40) that the Blazers are looking to stand pat at No. 7 with an eye on Kentucky guard Shaedon Sharpe.

"For weeks we've heard about the Portland Trail Blazers at No. 7 possibly trading that pick off, maybe for Jerami Grant of the Detroit Pistons. From what I understand, Portland has decided not to go down that path and as of right now is planning to draft at No. 7.
"Jonathan Givony has them taking Shaedon Sharpe out of Kentucky, and I have heard the same thing that that is who they are targeting. That is something I would not have expected two to three weeks ago."

The NBA draft is scheduled to begin Thursday at 8 p.m. ET from Brooklyn, New York's Barclays Center.

Adding Sharpe would reportedly get Blazers superstar point guard Damian Lillard's seal of approval. Jonathan Givony of ESPN reported Lillard is "high" on Sharpe.

Portland will look a lot different year-to-year when the season opens in October. The Blazers already dealt longtime guard CJ McCollum to the New Orleans Pelicans in February, and center Jusuf Nurkic is a free agent.

Lillard, a six-time All-Star and six-time All-NBA team member, is still aboard as the Blazers' on- and off-court leader. Portland has talent to work with around Lillard, such as 23-year-old Anfernee Simons (17.3 PPG), but there's more building to be done for new general manager Joe Cronin as he looks to improve a team that went 27-55 last year.

Picking at No. 7 presumably precludes the Blazers from getting the draft's consensus top four of Chet Holmgren, Paolo Banchero, Jaden Ivey and Jabari Smith Jr. Still, there's plenty of talent remaining, especially at shooting guard and forward in Sharpe, Duke's AJ Griffin and Iowa's Keegan Murray, among others.

Portland also holds the Nos. 36 and 58 draft picks.