Let the Denver fire sale begin!
In the first of what could be many moves for the Nuggets today, they’ve dished sharpshooter Arron Afflalo to Portland, giving the Blazers some much-needed depth off the bench.
The full deal is Will Barton, Victor Claver, Thomas Robinson, a future lottery-protected first rounder and a second rounder from the Blazers for Afflalo and Alonzo Gee. That lottery protected pick is for 2016 and 2017, and if it doesn’t fall into the Nuggets’ hands by then, the deal becomes two second round picks.
So far, Afflalo is averaging 14.5 points in about 33 minutes per game this season. He’s not shooting quite as well as he has in past years, but part of that is probably the defensive focus he’s drawn being one of the only reliable shooters in Denver. With Aldridge, Wes Matthews and Lillard to take the attention away, Rip City should become Spot Up City for the former UCLA star.
This move definitely strengthens the Blazers, but the implications for Denver could be just as big. Adding Thomas Robinson stands out as a possible precursor to a Kenneth Faried deal later in the day. While Robinson isn’t nearly the player Faried is, he still has a lot of potential, and could develop nicely when he’s not playing behind someone like Alridge.
Afflalo can become a free agent in the offseason, but the Blazers really make a deep run into the playoffs, there’s no reason why he wouldn’t want to stick around for another year as a contender with Portland.