Bill Simmons Has A Trade Proposal For You
By caseyholdahl Posted in: LaMarcusAldridge
Grantland editor and ESPN television personality Bill Simmons spent part of his morning on Twitter
concocting fake trades involving draft picks now that the order has been set. Simmons always likes to mix it up with Trail Blazers fans, so it figures he'd suggest a potential move featuring our most important player.
Now, Simmons isn't exactly pulling this idea out of thin air. Yahoo's Adrian Wojnarowski reported a month ago that the Cavaliers have "fantasized" about acquiring Aldridge
, thinking it would help in luring Lebron James back to his native land when he hits free agency, potentially in 2014. And of course, there are those who believe Aldridge himself is going to bolt
once he becomes a free agent, with the assumption being the Trail Blazers should consider trading him now, lest they lose him without getting some kind of compensation in return.
So there are grounds for Simmons proposing this trade. Having said that, I still don't like it. Tristan Thompson is a nice, young player who shares various similarities to Aldridge, but he'd be a considerable downgrade in the short term, and all indications are that the team is not willing to take a huge step backwards after achieving some level of success this season, relatively speaking. If you're the kind of fan who hates power forwards who shoot from midrange, you might prefer Thompson, who only took 14 shots outside of 14 feet this season
, over Aldridge. Thompson rebounded at a slightly higher rate than Aldridge last season, but that could have had as much to do with Cleveland rebounding machine Anderson Varejao missing much of 2012-13
with a blood clot in his leg (Thompson's rebound percentage jumped three points
after Varejao's injury).
And as far as the No. 1 pick goes, there's no one in this draft, in my imperfect opinion, who is anywhere close to Aldridge's level. If he were leaving Texas after his sophomore season to enter the 2013 Draft, there's no question in my mind that Aldridge be the No. 1 pick. Not to mention that, according to some reports
, no one even wants the No. 1 pick this year.
If you're going to trade an all-star in his prime, you need to get back a player who you think is going to be an all-star in their prime. I don't think this deal meets that criteria. Then again, if the move created cap space, as these kind of uneven trades often do, and you felt strongly about the chances of wooing an all-star caliber player in free agency, then maybe it becomes more palatable.