Grade the Trade: Pelicans ditch Zion Williamson in mock deal with Mavs, Blazers

New Orleans Pelicans, Zion Williamson. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports
New Orleans Pelicans, Zion Williamson. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports /
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Dyson Daniels Blazers
Dyson Daniels, New Orleans Pelicans. Keon Johnson, Portland Trail Blazers. (Photo by Amanda Loman/Getty Images) /

Grade the Trade: Pelicans ditch Zion Williamson in mock deal with Mavs, Blazers: Grade for Trail Blazers

Yes, we all know Damian Lillard wants to go to the Miami Heat. But the Blazers have also stated that they are going to do what’s best for them. And if there were any team that could convince Lillard to join them, wouldn’t it be CJ McCollum’s?

Incoming: Dyson Daniels, Dereck Lively II, Tim Hardaway Jr., Richaun Holmes, Two first-round picks (via NOP), One first-round pick (via DAL), Two first-round pick swaps (via DAL)

Outgoing: Damian Lillard

This haul is better than anything the Heat could offer, especially when you consider the financial aspect of having to trade for Tyler Herro and Duncan Robinson.

Daniels is a tall guard who oozes potential. He just needs a place where he can get more minutes, and the Trail Blazers could definitely give him that.

Lively II would step in as Portland’s new long-term plan at the center position should he pan out. He would give Henderson and Anfernee Simons a great lob threat to pass to.

Again, Hardaway Jr. and Holmes would be in this deal for salary-matching purposes, but their deals aren’t as big nor as long as Herro’s or Robinson’s.

Plus, the picks Portland would receive in this trade are solid. The Pelicans could offer any two picks from their arsenal, whether it be theirs, a Los Angeles Lakers’ pick, or a Milwaukee Bucks’ pick.

And on top of all of that, the Trail Blazers’ cap books would stay relatively clean, as two of the four players they would receive are on rookie-scale contracts.

Potential starting lineup: Scoot Henderson, Anfernee Simons, Shaedon Sharpe, Jerami Grant, Dereck Lively Ii

Grade: A