The Portland Trail Blazers gave their fans an early NBA Draft gift by negotiating for Detroit Pistons striker Jerami Grant. To secure the former Team USA rep, CEO Joe Cronin split from the 2025 Milwaukee Bucks’ protected pick he received in February’s deal with the New Orleans Pelicans.
The Blazers also sent in his 36th pick – for the 46th Pistons pick tonight – in addition to returning the Pistons’ second round pick of 2025, he’ll have the better of Portland or New Orleans second rounders of 2026.
Grant’s $ 20 million deal also fits neatly into the trade exception created in the Pelicans deal, which meant the Blazers were not required to send any money as they opened up space for the Pistons.
Sports Illustrated’s Rohan Nadkarni gave the Blazers an A, calling the deal a breeze as he handed a C to the Pistons.
It will be a very nice complementary piece next to Lillard. Portland is in dire need of long, athletic wings alongside Dame that she can also shoot and defend, and Grant fits the bill. With Josh Hart also occupying one of the points of the wing – and perhaps another veteran who could be acquired in exchange for the No. 7 – The Blazers should have a good balance on the floor that they have lacked in recent years. Grant can play in both forward positions (while he mainly plays in the four) and perhaps slip to center in rare cases in super small looks.
Grant should thrive by playing off the ball from Lillard. Last season he shot 36.2% on three catch-and-shoots, enough to keep an honest defense, and Dame should give him an even better look going forward. For now, Grant is only signed through 2023 for nearly $ 21 million, but after last season’s teardown, the Blazers have the flexibility to sign him with a deal that should get through Grant’s best time and not ruin their targeting record. . Grant may not be such an exciting second star CJ McCollum. However, he is a proven player who has already once managed to play against a star who dominates the ball. With the Blazers needing some two-way wings and still having room to maneuver for more talent, this deal was a layup.
Benyame Kidane at The Sporting News applauded Cronin for getting Grant for a relatively small comeback, giving the Blazers an A- and the Pistons a B +.
The Trail Blazers haven’t had to give up much to fill a key role on their roster as they try to reorganize superstar Damian Lillard. Surprisingly, they were able to complete the deal without parting with their No. 7 in this year’s draft, allowing them to add another high-end talent to their core of young players. Having relied on their undersized backcourt for offense in recent years, Grant immediately gives the Blazers a netting threat from the winger. He also provides them with a versatile defender who can fill multiple positions.
Last season, the Blazers were one of the worst defensive teams in the league, ranking 29th in the defensive standings. Grant immediately fits in as the best defender. In 47 games last season, Grant averaged 19.2 points, 4.1 rebounds and 2.4 assists with 42.6% from the field and 35.8% from the 3-point line. The move is also a boost for Lillard, who wished to partner with Grant. The pair together won a gold medal for Team USA at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Portland’s ability to use the $ 21 million commercial exception it created as part of its relationship with the Clippers and Pelicans last season it is an advantage.
In contrast, ESPN’s Kevin Pelton gave the Blazers a B + and the Pistons an A-, giving Detroit the head start for the extra $ 20 million in cap space it now owns.
It will be interesting to see how Grant fits into a competing team again. He held a role for the Denver Nuggets in 2019-20, helping them reach the Western Conference finals on the bubble, before signing with the Pistons to gain more offensive opportunities. Grant’s utilization rate jumped from finishing 18% below the Denver works average to 28.5% in Detroit. In that context, Grant’s near-average efficiency was impressive, as he had never been considered a filming creator.
In Portland, Grant’s role will likely end somewhere in between these two extremes. Lillard and Simons are running as the team’s top two scorers, but Grant may be allowed to do more on offense when either guard is on the bench, historically a problematic spot for the Blazers’ offense. When off the ball, Grant is the kind of high-volume but average accuracy 3-point shooter (36% last season with 6.1 attempts per game) Portland has typically played forward.
CBS Sports’ Jack Maloney awarded the Blazers an A- and the Pistons a B, praising the fact that Portland has only had to give up what appears to be an irrelevant compensation for Grant.
The first step was to go out and acquire Grant, for which Lillard claimed, for Wojnarowski. Grant should be perfect as a versatile forward who will immediately improve his porous defense and can take some of the offensive responsibility off Lillard’s shoulders. Having a real scoring threat on the wing will be a nice change of pace for the Blazers, who have relied on a small backcourt for so long.
Especially for the Blazers, they didn’t have to give up much to get a player to make their team better. A first-round pick three years later means a lot more to a rebuilding Pistons team than a Blazers team looking to win now. Round two choices and trades are anything.
Last Word on Sports’s Wyatt Carlson scored Portland with an A and the Pistons with a B-, highlighting Grant’s defensive prowess.
There have been commercial talks centered around whether Grant was traded for Portland’s seventh overall pick in this year’s draft. Portland was able to bring a second option to mate alongside Lillard who really plays on his skills without going through such a high capital. In fact, they don’t give up even one of their own picks, so they have the option to rebuild at any time without getting stressed out about giving up a high lottery pick.
In previous years Portland’s second option had been CJ McCollum, another undersized guard who injured them on the defensive. Grant is a player who as a 6’8 ″ winger can use his length to have a strong impact on the defensive side of the ball. Portland had targeted an older player to match Lillard after they moved in from McCollum when the trade expired. Bringing a player as good as Grant who averaged 19.2 points and shot 35.8% from three will completely change Portland’s attack. This will be the best winger Lillard has played with since he played with LaMarcus Aldridge.
Portland was also able to keep Anfernee Simons in this exchange. This means that they will be in the process of competing for the playoffs while still having young players in Simons and the seventh overall pick to help the rebuilding process in the future. Simons was able to average 17.3 points without Lillard last season and may be able to slip into the shooting guard position to start alongside Lillard.
Zach Harper at Athletic (subscription required) saw the deal as B for Portland and C + for Detroit. also praising the Blazers for the figure they had to give up.
Grant is a really nice pickup for the Blazers. Putting someone with their skill and versatility on both ends of the floor begins to bring back to life a lot of veteran know-how we’ve seen missing for most of 2021-22. Chauncey Billups was ultimately burdened with playing many guys that most NBA fans have never heard of, and the result was the record for most defeats by 30 points in a season (15!). Now, the direction is clear enough. Back to the playoffs. Make this look like a competitive team again. And ask Damian Lillard for the help you need so badly. The Grant acquisition is the first part of this.
The Blazers used pick 7 in this draft as a lure to try and acquire some veterans who can help this team win fast. Some of the voices swirled around them in pursuit Toronto Raptors forward OG Anunoby, and really, it’s the next move or series of moves that will tell us how good this deal is for Portland. If this is the main move the Blazers make, then it’s going to be a pretty tough season once again.
Grant is good. He has grown a lot in h
it’s time in the NBA, and it really took off after arriving in Denver. In Detroit, he was asked to be a top scorer and amassed 20.9 points per game with 55.6% real shots. He adds his defensive skills and can help the Blazers in many areas that have been missing in recent years. They need interchangeable wings on both ends of the floor and Grant gives them one. However, he is only under contract for 2022-23. Portland absolutely does this trade assuming it can sign it again, but that’s not a fact. The Blazers need more help from Grant and will need to make sure it’s a long-term solution. The closet for this list is still pretty bare.
Clutch Points’ Karl Rasmussen awarded the Blazers with an A and the Pistons with a modest C, highlighting the possible impact Grant can have playing alongside Damian Lillard.
The Blazers have decided to reorganize the roster, rather than rebuild it, and keep trying to build around Damian Lillard. Whether or not that call pays off in the long run remains to be seen, but considering the Blazers are committed to staying competitive, Grant is a great addition to the squad. 3-eD specialist, Grant represents exactly what the Blazers have been missing on the wing in recent years.
Last year in Detroit, Grant averaged 19.2 points per game, knocking down 1.9 3 a night with a 35.8% clip. He was a reliable offensive threat on the perimeter and is also a talented defender. Grant is capable of playing in both positions as a forward and could fit in as a powerful forward, siding alongside Lillard, Anfernee Simons, Josh Hart and Jusuf Nurkic in what would be a formidable starter five.
The Blazers got the valuable winger asset they craved since the trade deadline and didn’t even have to give up their first-round draft pick to get it. Portland will add Grant to the roster while he will also be able to capture some young talent with the seventh overall pick. This is an absolute win for the Blazers, who got a quality piece at a truly insignificant cost.
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