Trail Blazers president Larry Miller doesn't intend this summer to be the start of a long rebuilding process. According to Miller, the plan is to instantly transform the Blazers back into contenders, and Portland is "dreaming big" when it comes to free agent targets, as the team president tells Jason Quick of the Oregonian.
"We can't say 'We are going after this guy, that guy, and this guy'," Miller said. "But we have positioned ourselves to compete for those big-name players. And this is a strong draft. Whether we trade our picks, or use our picks, we are going to get better going into next season."
The top priority for the Blazers in the summer will be finding a point guard, though Miller says it's not a certainty that Raymond Felton won't be back. Felton himself addressed the topic, responding to a tweet by Blazers TV announcer Mike Barrett that suggested the point guard wouldn't be playing for Portland next season:
"I would love to play here," Felton said (via Ben Golliver of Blazer's Edge). "We'll see what happens. The media and fans, they don't dictate that. People can say what they want to say. I don't care."
Felton added that Blazers management had broached the topic of a return to him and his agent, but I imagine the odds of Felton returning to Portland are still very slim. With a weak point guard draft class, it's more likely Portland takes advantage of some of its cap space and signs a free agent — Steve Nash, Andre Miller, D.J. Augustin, and Kirk Hinrich are among the players the Blazers could pursue.
Before the team reaches the free agency period though, it will need to hire a new general manager. According to Miller, the GM search has been making progress, with two interviews lined up for this week, including one with a "big-name candidate." Chad Buchanan has been acting as GM since the team fired Rich Cho nearly a year ago.