There aren't many quality free agents left on the board, but the Portland Trail Blazers just snagged one of them.
Former Kentucky Wildcats star Patrick Patterson, who has been in the league for 11 years, has agreed to a training camp deal with the Blazers, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Patterson has spent the last two seasons with the Los Angeles Clippers.
The 32-year-old has been a journeyman throughout his career, never spending four full seasons with a franchise. However, now at the latter part of his career, he’s been consistently picked up by contending teams.
Patterson has a unique skill set as he has solid size and can also shoot well. He averaged 5.2 points per game last season, knocking down 1.1 threes per game as well. The 6-foot-8 forward is a premier 3-and-D player, especially at his cost. He’s a career 36.9% shooter from deep and got up to 39% during the 2019-20 season while attempting 2.9 triples per game.
The Blazers may be on the verge of losing their star point guard Damian Lillard. While this isn’t the answer to appease Lillard, Patterson should be a solid addition since Carmelo Anthony left during free agency.
The Blazers ranked second in the NBA in three-point field goals made last season. They will be retaining much of their offensive production, but with Patterson, they could see that number tick even higher.
Patterson doesn’t solve all the problems this team has, but it’s certainly a good move for them. This late in free agency, snagging a rotational player isn’t easy, and a sharpshooting threat like Patterson should’ve been taken off the board sooner anyway.
Patterson will likely be behind Robert Covington and Derrick Jones Jr. He could also see time behind Jusuf Nurkic at the five if the Blazers opt for more small-ball lineups. Regardless, this is a good match for both sides.