Report: Portland Lands Hedo
Henry Abbott of TrueHoop is reporting that the Blazers have landed top free agent Hedo Turkoglu for the princely sum of $50 million (or more) over five years. Hedo had been the expected target of Portland's largess before the Magic acquired Vince Carter. That move made this move rather logical from every perspective.
... well, except the perspective that it's unclear exactly why Portland needs a ball-dominant small forward. After all, the Blazers do have one Brandon Roy, eternal All-Star, under contract. And with Roy dominating the ball this season, the Blazers finished with the league's finest offense. In terms of offense, this is a bit like the Lakers adding Ron Artest: sounds good on the surface, but when you look at the details, you get a bit worried.
I won't say this is the same thing as Artest in L.A., however, because while Artest has never (ever!) shown an ability to fit his square body into a round hole, Hedo has. In fact, Hedo wasn't always a ball-dominating point forward. Stan Van Gundy turned him into such, because Van Gundy and the Magic needed such. Hedo can tone down his ball-dominant ways, where you'd be hard-pressed to visualize Artest doing the same.
The real problem here is that Hedo is a full five years older than any other truly vital piece of the Blazers puzzle. He is 30, and will be under this contract until age 35. He will not get more tradable as time proceeds, and he will not likely be a better basketball player in two years or three years than he was this season. That means the Blazers are not really paying $50 million for five years of Hedo Turkoglu. They are paying $50 million for five years of a progressively less bombastic version of Hedo Turkoglu. Unless Portland thinks it's window is ready to fly open right now, Hedo might be effectively done by the time there's a Blazers path to the championship. I understand cap space must be used, but there are much better ways Kevin Pritchard could have skinned this duck. In my opinion.