After the Utah Jazz officially match the offer on Paul Milsap from the Portland Trail Blazers today, it seems like the team will have to head back to the drawing board. Obviously they made this deal to do one of two things: sign Paul Milsap or force a division rival to have to worry about really shaking things up to stay near the top of the salary cap. Either way, they've made at least one of their goals happen, but what happens in the next couple of months could really make or break this season.
Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge
I'm not going to start worrying about the extensions of these two players as the organization, Kevin Pritchard, and Paul Allen would be complete morons to not give them whatever they need to be happy here. While this waiting period has been extremely frustrating, I'm going to give the team the benefit of the doubt in hopes that this all works out sooner than later. I'm just hoping that Pritchard isn't putting off their deals while he's out shopping for free agents and trades when he could be using his two stars to leverage these deals.
Lamar Odom. Ray Felton. David Lee. Andre Miller. Ramon Sessions. Do you really want to see any of those guys in a Blazers uniform? Aside from Felton and maybe Sessions, I would have to say "no" to all of them. Odom will forever be a "Laker" to me or just a guy that's potentially cancerous in a locker room. Lee is a starting F/C in this league and asking him to go backup for this team just doesn't seem like a good fit, especially at his price tag. And Miller is just too damn old...oh and he can't shoot for sh*t. Felton would make sense, but at what cost?
Just Wait for a Mid-Season Splash?
As the economy hovers around "not-so-good" and the trade deadline creeps upon the league, teams are going to look at shedding big contracts. If the Blazers stand still during this free agent signing period, keep the team they have, and continue to improve, a mid-season deal could be just what they need. You talk about bargaining power? Upwards of $8 million dollars would surely give them just that when the winter of 2009 rolls around.