Blazers Notes: Jones, Carmelo, Covington, Elleby

Before he committed to the Trail Blazers, Derrick Jones had free agency meetings with the Kings and Timberwolves, as Jonathan Abrams of The New York Times details in an interesting blow-by-blow account of Jones’ night on November 20.

According to Abrams, Jones mostly listened and nodded during Sacramento’s eight-minute pitch, but was more engaged and asked questions on a call with Portland that lasted nearly an hour. Jones seemed ready to commit to the Blazers on the spot, but his agent Aaron Turner said they’d let the team know by the end of the night.

Jones was also impressed by the Timberwolves’ pitch that came next, but was still leaning toward Portland’s offer. The Blazers had said they’d be talking to other free agents over the course of the night and would sign the first one that called back to agree to their offer, so Jones had to make a fairly quick decision, Abrams writes.

After Turner called back the Wolves to see if they could increase their offer at all, he told them Jones would be signing elsewhere, and contacted the Blazers to accept their two-year offer worth the full mid-level.

“Getting a guy like Derrick — an elite athlete, protects the rim, great finisher, rates in the 80th percentile in blocks and steals — was a big win for us,” president of basketball operations Neil Olshey said of the signing this week, per Jason Quick of The Athletic.

Here’s more on the Blazers:

  • Before Carmelo Anthony agreed to re-sign with Portland, he and Olshey talked about his potential role, discussing the possibility that the 10-time All-Star could come off the bench this season. “Ideally, for him, he would still start. I think that’s where his mindset is — he’s never come off the bench,” Olshey told reporters this week, per Quick. “Obviously, that will be (coach Terry Stotts‘) call. But I think the conversation was, ‘Make the decision to come back based on the reality that you will likely come off the bench.'”
  • Olshey added that he believes it makes more sense to have Anthony as part of the second unit, since he can be a featured scorer off the bench, whereas newly-added forward Robert Covington doesn’t need the ball much, making him a “perfect complement” to Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum.
  • One of the Blazers’ top offseason goals was to find someone who can be their fourth-best player behind Lillard, McCollum, and Jusuf Nurkic. As Quick writes, the Blazers believes Covington will be that player. “Now we know we have a fourth guy every night that can make a high enough impact that can give us a chance to win,” Olshey said.
  • Olshey expressed excitement about CJ Elleby, the No. 46 overall pick in the draft who has signed a guaranteed two-year, minimum-salary contract with the club. “I think he is a really good basketball player,” Olshey said, according to Quick. “I think we will all probably anticipate that this year will be an apprenticeship for him, but he will have a chance to compete every day with our younger players. He has a chance to have a very long career.”
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15 thoughts on “Blazers Notes: Jones, Carmelo, Covington, Elleby

  1. The Human Rain Delay

    This team stays healthy the skys the limit really-

    I dont want to jump the shark here so ill slide them in as my 4 seed


    Top 4 bonafied

    Upside Bottom 4 –

    Then theres still boring good teams like GSW UtAH AND Minn ready to jump into the mix as well

    • The west is going to be tough to think GSW does not make it is no way. Dallas is 8/9. NO has not made it. Paul must stay healthy too.


      • harden-westbrook-mvps

        That’s a huge if with CP3, I’d put the Suns chances of making the playoffs no higher than the Warriors. The top 7 looks good there, no one can argue with that. But it’s wide open to see what team replaces OKC. Could be the Pelicans, or the Suns, maybe the Warriors. Probably not the Spurs, whose playoff run ended last year meaning the Rockets now have the longest current postseason streak.

  2. formerlyz

    Lillard, CJ, Covington, Melo, Collins
    Derrick Jones jr, Trent, Nurkic, Hood, Little, Simons, Giles

    Portland should be much improved, barring health

    With Collins missing the start of the season, Giles might make sense as a starter, so Nurkic gets used to what should be his role off the bench behind Collins once he comes back.

    • Dxit90a

      No way Collins starts over Nurkic. Nurkic Is better and needed in the starting line up .
      This is what I predict the line up to be:
      Pg: Lillard,
      SG: CJ,
      SF: Hood
      PF: Covington,
      C: Nurkic
      1. Melo SF/PF
      2. Trent SG/
      3. Collins PF/C
      4. Derrick Jones jr SF/Pf
      5., Simons PG/SG
      6. Giles PF/C
      7. Little SF/ PF

      They can be a top four in the west but they and Utah will be fighting for it .

  3. mcmillankmm

    If Portland stays healthy this season, I think they could finish as high as #2 in West

    • The Human Rain Delay

      Agree 100% …. it probably takes a lot of good health and maybe a little mini breakout from one of DJjr Hood or Trent but very doable

  4. Sillivan

    Vegas has Blazers at 9th seed
    I have Suns at 9th seed

    Vegas top 4 four days ago

    • The Human Rain Delay

      Wow you can prolly get some pretty good O/U on season total wins I imagine then

      GSW take the under

      PO – Over

  5. Sillivan

    Las Vegas odds

    5th seed mavs
    6th Rockets
    7th Jazz
    8th Blazers
    9th Pelicans
    10th Suns

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