The ideal situation for the Phoenix Suns in the 2013 NBA draft (holding the 5th overall pick) is if either Nerlens Noel or Alex Len surprisingly drop to the number 5 spot, giving them a chance to trade away Marcin Gortat, who despite his abilities and numbers hasn’t been very happy or compatible with what the team is trying to run.
The Suns are looking for another first round draft pick, which they will try and deal for if they do get a center they’re happy with in the top 5. Gortat might not be what teams dream of when they think of a high draft pick, but with a one-year deal left on his contract worth $7 million and the potential to do a lot better than his 11.1 points and 8.5 rebounds from last season for the right team, finding him a new club shouldn’t be such a problem.
The Portland Trail Blazers have been constantly mentioned as a team that might be willing to give up their 10th overall pick in order to get Gortat. The Blazers didn’t miss starting lineup talent last season – depth and a very weak bench was what kept them out of the postseason, but having a better center than J.J. Hickson will be something they’ll be very happy with, and they won’t be able to get with the 10th pick in the draft.
Gortat is simply too good to pass once the Suns put him on the trading block. He hasn’t done well with Goran Dragic running the point guard position for the Suns, but he did average 15.4 points per game in 2011-2012, with Steve Nash feeding him in the paint. There aren’t a lot of talented post scorers in the NBA, and the ‘Polish Hammer’ is one of the few who is, potentialy making a very lethal big-man combination with LaMarcus Aldridge.
That is… if Aldridge isn’t traded, which is a rumor beginning to circulate around the NBA recently. The seven year veteran, one of the best power forwards in the NBA (averaging 21.1 points and 9.1 rebounds) is rumored to be pushing for a trade out of Portland, but that means his next team will have to pick up his remaining two years, along with $30.3 million he’ll be paid on them.
At the moment, it doesn’t seem likely the talented trio of Aldridge, Batum and Lillard will be broken up so soon, but if the Blazers will be giving up their 10th pick for Gortat they might be trying to get another first round pick (or more) back, and Aldridge just might be the player they’ll be using to initiate that trade.