One idea that’s been thrown around since the beginning of the Damian Lillard trade sweepstakes is for a third or fourth team to get pulled into talks to help facilitate a deal. At the start of the saga, that theoretically meant finding a third team for Tyler Herro, as Lillard wants to go to the Miami Heat and Herro, the presumed centerpiece in a deal, doesn’t really fit on Portland’s roster.
But with trade talks apparently heating back up in recent days and the Heat reportedly not being involved in them (for now), there are now questions about what a Lillard trade could look like if another team gets called up. And according to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, there are multi-team deals once again on the table, with the Blazers having their eye on one player in particular.
Additionally, the Phoenix Suns and Utah Jazz have materialized as peripheral teams that could factor into larger deals that help facilitate Lillard’s departure from the Blazers.
Assembling such a blockbuster requires the summation of many parts. One piece of the developing Lillard negotiations that seems clear: Portland has strongly considered acquiring Phoenix Suns center Deandre Ayton as part of a multiteam deal for Lillard, league sources confirmed to Yahoo Sports.
It’s not hard to see why the Blazers would be interested in a guy like Ayton, who is still only 25 and fits really well next to their young core of guards. While his deal is more expensive and over the same number of years as their current center, Jusuf Nurkic, he fits more snugly onto their timeline, while Fisher noted that Nurkic could potentially head down the Phoenix if a deal like this were to come to fruition.