RUMOR: Blazers’ Plan A to get Damian Lillard more help before Larry Nance Jr. trade
The Portland Trail Blazers added more help for Damian Lillard when they landed Larry Nance Jr. in the three-team deal that sent Lauri Markkanen to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Before that, however, they were apparently eyeing a different player: Memphis Grizzlies wing Dillon Brooks.
According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, the Blazers had an interest in Brooks before they acquired Nance from the Cavs. The 25-year-old had been rumored to be available in trade talks for the right price as the Grizzlies try to cut down its guaranteed contracts.
It is unknown if the Blazers had any discussions with the Grizzlies for Brooks and whether it went far or not. However, it seems they have already abandoned the idea given that they are already lacking in assets to make the trade possible. Portland sent Derrick Jones Jr. to the Chicago Bulls in the three-team trade.
For what it’s worth, Grizzlies star Ja Morant recently refuted the talks about Dillon Brooks being available in a trade. After all, he is a key part of Memphis’ core and it’s hard to imagine the team parting ways with him given their status as an up-and-coming squad with plenty of young talent.
Brooks averaged 17.2 points, 2.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists in a starting role for the Grizzlies. He played in 67 games and registered a 41.9 percent shooting clip from the field–including 34.4 percent from 3-point territory.
It would have been interesting to see Brooks pair up with Damian Lillard. Nonetheless, the prospect of that from happening might had been slim, which could be why the Blazers chose not to pursue it.