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NBA Rumors: Portland Trail Blazers Not Actively Shopping CJ McCollum

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(via Bleacher Report)

(via Bleacher Report)

The Portland Trail Blazers haven't really made a lot of changes to their roster going into the offseason, with the team only adding new players around the fringes, as well as re-signing free agent Norman Powell, who had an outstanding 2020-21 season (18.6 PPG, 41.1% from 3PT range).

There were rumors that Damian Lillard would request a trade this offseason after the Portland Trail Blazers have gotten eliminated in the first round once again. Lillard rebuked the report, though he did add that he has no "firm decision" on his future with the Portland Trail Blazers. The Portland Trail Blazers have been a consistent playoff team in recent memory, though they haven't made it deep into the playoffs over the last two seasons.

It is clear that if the Portland Trail Blazers want to win a championship, they need to make a win-now move to support Damian Lillard. The easiest way to do so is by seeing what CJ McCollum fetches on the trade market, and explore the possibility of giving Lillard a better co-star. However, it seems as though the Portland Trail Blazers aren't actively looking to trade CJ McCollum, based on a report by Jason Quick of The Athletic.

The obvious and easiest path to acquire talent is trading shooting guard CJ McCollum. Not only can his $30.8 million salary bring back a player, or players, of value, but also Portland already has his replacement in Powell, who is a natural shooting guard. That would allow Portland to explore landing an upgrade at small forward or power forward (Robert Covington can play both forward positions).

But it sounds like Portland is not actively shopping McCollum. I don’t know whether that is because Portland doesn’t agree with how teams value McCollum, or whether Neil Olshey is overly infatuated with him, but the general tone I’ve heard is the Blazers won’t move him just to have a different look next season. The trade has to make them better, and so far, other teams haven’t met that bar.

It remains to be seen if the Portland Trail Blazers do end up doing something to drastically alter their roster. While McCollum isn't going to get traded by the Trail Blazers just for the sake of making a trade, Damian Lillard is in his prime, and he wants to win now. Any deal for a potential co-star would likely involve McCollum, and while he isn't up for trade right now, perhaps that could change in the future.