Several sources with knowledge of the situation have told TKB that the Portland Trailblazers are getting serious about trading for David Lee.
Blazers ownership thinks Lee is the perfect 6th man who will be 26 in April and can be part of their long term plans. As we know Lee has leverage because he doesn’t have to sign with a team he is traded to, but playing in Portland with their young core would be very attractive.
The Blazers’ organization feels Lee’s style of play would fit perfectly in Portland as he can play in both the half court system and get out and run as well as any forward in the NBA. Plus he’d be a “flex” forward who could make them a big half court team or a smaller quicker team depending if he subbed in for LaMarcus Aldridge, Greg Oden or Nicolas Batum.
The question now becomes what do the Blazers give up in order to match what the Knicks need. We’ve said Donnie Walsh might move Lee with Curry as a means to get Curry’s contract off the books. But there isn’t great rush in moving Curry at this point because he is under contract next year. Since they were able to move Zach Randolph and Jamal Crawford, there isn’t any desperation. At some point they want to move Big Ed, but it doesn’t have to be at the expense of Lee especially with his value being quite high. ESPN reported that Walsh turned down the Nuggests offer of Chucky Atkins and two first round picks for the former 30th overall pick.
The Knicks may be interested in Jerryd Bayless, who has fallen behind Sergio Rodriguez on their depth chart, and whom the team passed on in this year’s draft or Rodriguez , but the combination of either and a first round pick won’t be enough to entice Walsh. This is where a third team may get involved.
TKB was the first outlet to report the Clippers involvement on November 21 in talks for Zach Randolph. We were also the first to learn that Stephon Marbury would suit up against the Bucks, a sure sign that the Randolph trade would go through since the incoming players would not play and the team needed to dress 8 players, an NBA rule.
Interesting stuff may be in the works so stay tuned as we stay on it…