The Portland Trail Blazers are making preparations to retain star player Damian Lillard for the first 20-25 regular season games as trade negotiations with the Heat remain in limbo.
Lillard had requested to be traded to Miami over two months ago but is yet to be traded as the two teams are unable to reach a mutually acceptable deal.
According to NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski, the league has experienced a slowdown in trade activities during the offseason, with teams and players resuming their routines as training camp approaches.
The next significant deadline on the horizon is the start of the regular season, which may see the Blazers keeping Lillard temporarily to assess trade opportunities.
Wojnarowski speculates that teams could become more interested in acquiring Lillard as the season progresses, potentially leading to more favorable trade terms or even complex three-team deals.
“I think you can expect the Blazers to talk with teams again before then but, I think this is an organization that is fully prepared, and I think Damian Lillard is also prepared, for the possibility that this training camp may start with him in camp and then if you’re the Blazers, you wait to see what happens in the first 20 to 25 games of the season, to see what direction teams go in,” Woj said, via HoopsHype.
“Teams may become interested who aren’t interested now or teams who are interested now may be willing to give more in trades and it certainly gives you the possibility to construct three-team deals, which is what a Damian Lillard deal might look like.”