3: Eric Bledsoe
Eric Bledsoe, Justice Winslow, and Keon Johnson were the three former Clippers players that were dealt to the Trail Blazers on Feb. 4. In return, Los Angeles received Norm Powell and Robert Covington.
Bledsoe played in 54 games with Los Angeles and averaged 9.9 points, 4.2 assists, and 3.4 rebounds. He shot 42.1% from the field and 31.3% from the 3-point line.
The 12-year veteran isn’t the best shooter from beyond the arc but when you think of Bledsoe’s name, it’s his defense that comes to mind. He was named to the 2019-20 All-Defensive Second Team for the role that he played in Milwaukee’s league-best defensive rating of 102.5.
Bledsoe has yet to play in a game for Portland due to a left Achilles injury. It was thought that the guard would be on the move for the second time this year but he remained on the Trail Blazers’ roster beyond the deadline.
His injury popped up after he was traded. A day before the trade happened, Bledsoe played in 20 minutes against the Lakers and scored seven points (3-of-8), dished out seven assists, pulled down three rebounds, and added one steal.
Portland hasn’t bought out Bledsoe’s contract but if it does, the Nets should make a push to sign Bledsoe if he’s healthy. His play has dropped off over the past two seasons but after waiving DeAndre’ Bembry, Bledsoe could be a defensive spark off the bench.
Unless New York City lifts its vaccine mandate or Kyrie Irving gets vaccinated, Bledsoe could also be a possible backup point guard option for games played at Barclays Center.