BLAZERS TRADE: Mason Plumlee for Jusuf Nurkic

Nov 13, 2016; Portland, OR, USA; Portland Trail Blazers forward Mason Plumlee (24) dribbles past Denver Nuggets center Jusuf Nurkic (23) during the first quarter at the Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

With Rip City Eyeing Philadelphia, Portland Sends Their Starting Center to Denver for the Up-And-Coming Center

The Blazers Have Traded Mason Plumlee and a 2018 Second Round Pick to Denver for Jusuf Nurkic and a 2017 First Round Pick. This trade not only brings a new face to Portland, but now Portland has Three First Round Picks in this years draft.

Nurkic is a big man that could give Portland consistent interior play. He brings youth, a manageable contract, and INTERIOR SIZE to Portland. Nurkic is a potential monster that can bang down low for buckets. His size and age spell nothing but potential for this new direction for the Blazers.

However, in what looks like a white flag on the 2016/2017 season, it appears that the Blazers are going to rebuild through this year’s draft. Sending Plumlee to Denver is sad on the surface, as he had turned himself into an important asset for the Blazers. However, the ability to have three first round draft picks, and in my opinion a positional upgrade, was too good to be true.

This trade seems to put Portland out of the running for Jahlil Okafor. Nurkic is practically the same player, if anything a little taller and wider.

Coach Terry Stotts had his best success with a traditional inside scoring presence. He helped win a title in Dallas with Dirk Nowitzki and was successful with LaMarcus Aldridge in Portland. Nurkic could become a tough interior force and consistent post scorer that we desperately need. Check out his highlights against the Warriors this year and see how he runs the pick and roll. A bigger body for Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum to run the pick and roll with could be exactly what the Blazers need.

Stay tuned Rip City, it’s a big move, but it may not be Portland’s last.

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