The Trail Blazers had one of the quietest seasons in the NBA, with few new incoming or outgoing players. The trade that sent Allen Crabbe to the Nets was Portland’s only major deal of the summer, but that wasn’t for lack of trying. Speaking to reporters at Media Day on Monday, Blazers president of basketball operations Neil Olshey suggested that his club was “incredibly aggressive” in exploring potential upgrades (link via Casey Holdahl of Blazers.com).
“I don’t like to talk about things that could have been, but like I said, we did everything in our power to try and accelerate where we’re trying to get to as a team,” Olshey said. “In terms of trades, it didn’t work out, but like I said, we didn’t give anything up either in terms of the future of the roster that we continue to build.”
Here are a few more highlights from Media Day in Portland:
- While Olshey was unable to add any impact players via trade over the offseason, he pointed to the Blazers’ $12.97MM trade exception – created in the Crabbe deal – as a tool that will continue to create opportunities for the club going forward, as Jason Quick of CSNNW.com writes. “Things are not over yet,” Olshey said. “We have the biggest trade exception in the league; we are still aggressive.”
- Veteran forward Ed Davis confirmed to reporters, including Holdahl (Twitter link), that he has been medically cleared to practice, and plans to be a full participant for training camp. Davis is coming off shoulder surgery, which he underwent back in March.
- Jusuf Nurkic, who is eligible to sign a contract extension until October 16, said he feels like Portland is the best place for him (Twitter link via Joe Freeman of The Oregonian). “I want to be here,” Nurkic said. While the Blazers likely feel the same way, an extension for the big man may be challenging, since he has only appeared in 20 games for the franchise, and the club has a handful of expensive, long-term commitments on its cap.