The Portland Trailblazers have traded Nicolas Batum away to the Charlotte Hornets in exchange for two players, Gerald Henderson and Noah Vonleh.
The Blazers would certainly like to go further in the post-season and the Hornets need some major help in rebuilding after a disappointing season in a trade that should help both teams.
The Charlotte Hornets have already been at work during the offseason and over the past week they dealt Lance Stephenson to the Clippers in exchange for Matt Barnes and Spencer Hawes. However, with Barnes reputation, perhaps no one actually wants him on their team and they already got rid of him in a trade for Luke Ridnour with the Memphis Grizzlies.
Michael Jordan got rid of Lance Stephenson and traded for Nic Batum? What's next? A good draft pick?
— Myles Brown (@mdotbrown) June 24, 2015
The Portland Trailblazers were almost forced to lose Batum in part due to uncertainty about the free-agency intentions of All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge, not wanting to lose either of their star players. However, Aldridge may be leaving no matter what and has plenty of attractive offers including the San Antonio Spurs and the Dallas Mavericks.
In the latest deal involving the Hornets in their effort to rebuild, they have acquired Batum who can help out greatly as an excellent shooting wingman. He started 71 games in 2014-15, averaging 9.4 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 4.8 assists while battling a nagging wrist injury.
The big guard who has spent his last seven seasons with Portland also averaged 6.4 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game over the past three seasons.The only other two players to do that were Lebron James and Russell Westbrook.
The Hornets ranked last in 3-point shooting over the 2014-2015 season, and the addition of Batum should greatly improve that and take some pressure off of some of their other players. He is a 36% 3-point shooter over his career, and the Hornets are reportedly still working on improving their shooting as the offseason continues.
With the Portland Trailblazers losing Nic Batum to the Hornets, they will look to be rebuilding in a number of areas with Wesley Matthews and LaMarcus Aldridge possibly leaving as well. They may end up starting Henderson in Matthews’ spot and hope to make it past the first round of the playoffs.