I want you to picture something in your mind.
You and two or three friends, your close friends, are eating in a moderately nice brunch establishment in Portland, Oregon. Tasty & Sons, Broder, maybe you took your dad to Mother's. Picture whatever place you are most likely to go to. You're talking about your week, downing some biscuits, maybe a little day drinking, I don't know.
All of a sudden, you hear the door open, and out of the corner of your eye, you see him, all six-foot-eight-inches, walking through that door:
The star power forward formerly of the Denver Nuggets and the New York Knicks strolls into your brunch spot. Everyone falls silent. He takes his seat (no reservation needed) and orders a plate of biscuits and jam. He eats, while everyone watches and mutters.
Oh my god, is that Melo?
THE Melo, here, in the brunch spot?
Did you see him against the Wolves the other night? Put young Wiggins in his grave!
Should he really be eating biscuits? He looks a little… bigger than I expected…
Ladies and gentlemen, I am here to tell you, right now: This beautiful and truthful future is closer than you ever could have expected. The Blazers are interested, so interested that they're going out of their way to not aid in a three-or-four-way deal with the Houston Rockets, the team Melo THINKS is his preferred destination, because his eyes haven't been opened all the way to the TRUTH of his inevitable late career renaissance in Portland. CJ McCollum and Damian Lillard are in touch and CJ is actively promoting this idea to anyone who will listen.
The Blazers can probably offer the best package—something like Mo Harkless and Poor Meyers Leonard and a pick—but the fact of the matter is that there will be no movement until Melo finally sees the light.
You see, Phil Jackson, bless his crooked, dusty heart, gave Melo a no-trade clause in his last contract, for God-only-knows what reason, probably because he is an old man who is easily intimidated by agents. And so, Melo can't just come here. He has to say "Yeah, I'll go there, please send me there," before he gets traded.
Now, a lot of people think that there's no way that Melo will consent to this. They are wrong.
Portland is a team ON THE UP AND UP BABY: three young stars and an excellent coach, all ready to work Melo into the system. Melo will be accepted and loved by a fan base that has actively disliked a grand total of two players in the last decade (Ray Felton and Poor Meyers, who people only disliked when Jusuf Nurkic showed up and revealed the path to a better way). Not to mention, Melo can learn just gobs and gobs of shit about smart investing and purchasing weird nation-state boats from Paul Allen. It's the perfect place to soundly prepare for retirement.
And hey, when Melo does come here, he will be following in the footsteps of hundreds who came before him: people who tried to make it work in New York, who really tried to ride the beast and become a legend, but who slowly realized that, in fact, New York is bullshit, it's too expensive and there are too many people who hate you, and that the only way to really be actually happy is to leave all that nonsense behind and step into the warm and caring arms of Portland, Oregon, a city with all the delights of a big metropolis but none of the pressures. It's perfect!
Now, there are some people who will tell you that the Blazers don't need Melo, or that he isn't that good, or blah blah blah whatever.
Do not listen to these people. They are nerds who are obsessed with the idea of the perfect basketball squad, who think that anything less than robotic Warriors-style perfection is beneath the dignity of any self respecting basketball fan base. Spit in their faces.
Does Melo hold the ball a little more than some widget on the Celtics? Sure. Does he occasionally take a long two pointer? I suppose. Is his defense perfect? It is not. But you know what else he does? He gets buckets, he gets boards, and he goes to the damn line. He's fun and charismatic and interesting and he's by far the biggest upside play currently on the market.
Look, the Blazers aren't gonna win a title in the next, like, five years. The Warriors are on a bloody path, monopolizing talent and bleeding opponents dry with thousands of swift, efficient pinpricks. Two years with Melo isn't going to set the Blazers franchise back (It might even clear cap room, if you can ship Evan Turner out), and it WILL BE EXTREMELY FUN. It should happen, it has to happen.
It will happen. You just have to believe.