Everything the Portland Trail Blazers have done this offseason has been through the draft and trading. They also have waived a couple of players, but they did not sign any free agents.

The Allen Crabbe trade

Last summer, the Brooklyn Nets offered Allen Crabbe a four-year, $75 million deal, which the Blazers matched the offer to retain him. This summer, the Blazers traded Crabbe to the Nets for Andrew Nicholson as a salary dump type of move. What a difference a year makes. The Blazers later waived Nicholson to shed his salary off the payroll.

The next salary dump move was waiving Festus Ezeli. The Blazers signed Ezeli to a two-year, $15.2 million contract last summer, but the big man was unable to register any games for Portland due to a season-ending knee injury. Due to his ailing knees, the Blazers were unsure if the one-time champion would play this season as well, so they decided to waive him instead of wasting money on him.

The Blazers also traded reserve point guard Tim Quarterman to the Houston Rockets for cash considerations, which was another cap-clearing move.

With all the salary shedding, Portland went from having the number one highest payroll to having the fifth highest payroll.

The 2017 NBA draft

The Blazers executed a draft-day trade with the Sacramento Kings to move up in the draft, trading the 15th and 20th overall picks for the 10th overall pick and selecting Zach Collins, a 6-foot-11 big man with the ability to defend, post up, and hit mid-range jumpers.

Portland’s next pick was Caleb Swanigan, who was taken 26th overall. Swanigan had himself quite an impressive Summer League, posting 16.1 points and 10.6 rebounds per game. The way he played during Summer League, it’s easy to believe that he may be the biggest steal of the draft.

With very little cap flexibility, the Blazers were prevented from making any major Free Agency moves, which is why they just stood by.

They are hoping their rookies could improve the roster, even after trading a key role player in Allen Crabbe. It was good that the Blazers cleared cap space this summer, but they were unable to do much else. Perhaps that’s what happens when you overpay players.

Roster outlook

PG: Damian Lillard/Shabazz Napier

SG: C.J. McCollum/Evan Turner/Pat Connaughton

SF: Al-Farouq Aminu/Moe Harkless/Jake Layman

PF: Noah Vonleh/Ed Davis/Meyers Leonard

C: Jusuf Nurkic/Caleb Swanigan/Zach Collins

Coach: Terry Stotts

Offseason Grade: C+

Don't miss our page on Facebook!