Fischer’s Latest: Blazers, Simmons, Payne, McConnell, Fournier

Trail Blazers general manager Joe Cronin didn’t appear to be posturing when he recently commented on the status of Damian Lillard‘s trade request, according to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, who writes that there wasn’t any buzz at Summer League about progress between the Blazers and the Heat on a possible deal.

Based on the way Portland has patiently handled the situation thus far, Fischer believes the process could indeed take months. The Blazers are said to be looking for something in the neighborhood of a Kevin Durant-type return in exchange for Lillard — a couple of very good young players and four first-round picks.

Here’s more from Fischer:

  • The Nets have been linked as a possible third team trade partner in talks between Portland and Miami (with rumored interest in Tyler Herro), but league sources tell Fischer that Brooklyn hasn’t had any serious talks involving Ben Simmons on that front. As Fischer points out, the Nets are surely aware that Simmons’ value has cratered, but they also seem “genuinely intrigued” by pairing a healthy Simmons with a much different roster in 2023/24 after trading Durant and Kyrie Irving.
  • The Suns have been involved in trade talks regarding point guard Cameron Payne, with Phoenix targeting Pacers point guard T.J. McConnell, perhaps in a multi-team deal, Fischer reports. Payne recently had his expiring $6.5MM contract fully guaranteed, while McConnell will earn $18MM over the next two seasons, $13.7MM of which is guaranteed.
  • The Knicks continue to actively explore Evan Fournier trades and are open to multi-team scenarios, sources tell Fischer. Fournier was pulled from New York’s rotation fairly early last season, only appearing in 27 contests and struggling with his shot in limited minutes. The 30-year-old will earn $18.86MM in 2023/24 and has a $19MM team option for ’24/25 that is highly likely to be declined.
View Comments (17)