NBA 2015 Draft: Reviewing The Trades

By Tamberlyn Richardson
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Apr 7, 2015; Miami, FL, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard Gerald Henderson (9) dribbles the ball as Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade (3) defends in the first half at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

New Trails?

Batum had an off season, but many point to his injuries and fatigue from playing internationally. In under a week LaMarcus Aldridge will enter free agency along with Marc Gasol and LeBron James. Since the other top candidates are expected to stay put LA is the biggest free agent target of most teams.

Presumably these moves are occurring to create cap space and potential to realign the Trail Blazers strategy, but it’s a fine line they are walking. While Aldridge and Damian Lillard are the two All Stars it was injured guard Wesley Matthews (also a free agent) and Batum who gave the Blazers their defensive edge and were strong enough offensively to allow Aldridge and Lillard room to excel. I’m not exactly sure how Henderson will fill Batum or Matthews position given the Blazers were effective offensively by spreading the floor, yet Henderson 1.7 attempts with 33% success won’t get it done.  On the other hand, the Rockets will be happy to only face Batum twice a year now….

Vonleh was someone I was keen to see develop in Charlotte, but he never fit in. Let’s hope he becomes the defensive juggernaut on the court we expected when he was drafted. The message appears to be that Charlotte is looking to add offense and Portland are increasing their defensive personnel and creating cap room in an effort to keep Aldridge. If you believe the rumor mill, it’s all for naught as Aldridge will return to his home state and join the San Antonio Spurs.

From my perspective when you add in the Blazers drafts and trades last night it sure feels like they are preparing for life without LA.

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