The Charlotte Hornets have agreed on a trade that sends Gerald Henderson and Noah Vonleh to the Portland Trail blazers for Nic Batum, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
This is it. This is when Lamarcus Aldridge spurns the Trail blazers in free agency for the Mavericks and Paul Alen and Terry Scotts blow up the roster, choosing a rebuild project around Damian Lillard instead.
But no. Apparently, the Trail blazers told Aldridge that Batum was about to be traded, and it was not a trade for a rebuild.
Sources: Blazers didn’t make deal as first step of rebuilding. Aldridge was aware of trade, and Blazers did deal independent of free agency.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) June 24, 2015
I like this trade for the Hornets. They were in search of a do-it-all wing when they signed Lance Stephenson, and they were smart to abandon that project when they did. They were smarter to get Batum when they did after he had a bad season battling injuring, needing a wrist surgery later in the year. Charlotte gets the jack-army-knife wing they wanted to possibly pair with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist on the wing.
I’m still shaky about this trade for Portland though. Acquiring an asset like Noah Vonleh is good for the future, but I’m not sure about how much he’ll be able to contribute in the near future; and it seems like Portland is trying to win now. They’re going to have to have a really good free agency, considering that they need to resign Aldridge and sign a player that can shoot, defend, and pass at Batum’s level.