Hawks, Blazers swap guards Kent Bazemore, Evan Turner in surprise deal: Trade Grades
The Blazers are adding some depth at the guard spot
The days in between the NBA Draft and the start of free agency are always filled with rumors and reports, but usually pretty quiet in terms of actual moves. But in sticking with the chaotic nature of this offseason, the Portland Trail Blazers and Atlanta Hawks agreed to a trade on Monday afternoon.
The Portland Trail Blazers have agreed to ship veteran forward Evan Turner to the Atlanta Hawks in exchange for guard Kent Bazemore. The move came out of nowhere, and is by no means a blockbuster, but it's still worth taking a look at what the deal means for each team.
Here are the trade grades:
Trail Blazers receive:
Portland trade grade: B-
The Trail Blazers' decision to drop $70 million on Evan Turner during the summer of 2016 never panned out the way they had hoped, even if he did have one heroic performance in Game 7 of their second-round series win over the Denver Nuggets this season. In any case, they've now moved on, swapping him, ironically enough, for another player who signed a bloated contract that summer.
In Bazemore, they'll get more of a true wing or shooting guard, which may be important depending on what happens this summer. Both Seth Curry and Rodney Hood, each of whom had some big playoff moments, are unrestricted free agents and could be on the move. Though he struggled shooting the ball last season, making just 32 percent of his 3-point attempts, Bazemore has been a solid outside shooter throughout his career -- 35.2 percent -- and could help fill that void.
Bazemore may not have the same versatility as Turner, but is probably a slight upgrade overall. In any case, he's probably a better fit for the Blazers as they try to make another deep playoff run. Teams won't be able to ignore him on the perimeter in the same way that teams could with Turner when he was playing off-ball. Not sure this deal moves the needle all that much, but if Bazemore's shooting returns to his career average levels next season he'll be a helpful player.
Atlanta trade grade: C
The Hawks continued their busy offseason by swapping Bazemore for Turner in a move that's a little tougher to understand from their perspective, at least from a basketball perspective. In the end, it may be more about doing Bazemore a favor by getting him to a contender, while adding a solid veteran voice to the locker room. Turner has always been known as a tremendous teammate, and was instrumental in building the strong culture in Portland. That will be valuable on a young team.
On the court, it was going to be tougher to find minutes for Bazemore this season after drafting De'Andre Hunter and Cam Reddish, as well as acquiring Allen Crabbe and Solomon Hills in other trades. In addition, Turner can handle the ball, and the Hawks will hope that he can play some back-up point guard, as well as potentially free up Trae Young to play off-ball a little bit.
For the most part, though, it's hard to really see how this move matters that much for the Hawks.
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