He’s not a max player.
Even if Portland could have acquired him in a sign-and-trade, I wouldn’t have been in support of it if the contract was a max deal or close to it. Lewis is a tall, athletic shooter, and that’s about where his skills end. He does not play much defense. He does not rebound. He is not a leader and doesn’t make those around him better. He’ll give you 20 points per game...and that’s about it. Which is fine — you need guys like that to fill it up. But a max deal? Has he ever been the best player on his own team? Probably not, and he won’t be with Orlando, either.
Eeesh. I wouldn’t give him a max deal if I were an NBA owner or GM. And it’s not like Orlando is one player away from a championship; even in the LEastern Conference. Heck, signing Rashard also means they can’t sign Darko now, which is a moderate loss for a mid-level team.
He’s a talented played and a good scorer, but it’s a somewhat questionable move.
Of course, because we're all about equal time and opportunity here at BlazersBlog, I present with you a sort-of opposing view courtesy of John Hollinger at ESPN.com:
"...adding Lewis and renouncing Milicic is a clear upgrade. While Milicic's potential is notable, few would ponder a Milicic-for-Lewis trade for long before pulling the trigger."
That's why the deal ends up being a winner from Orlando's end. This team still has plenty of work to do to separate itself from the East's huddled masses, but between the hiring of Stan Van Gundy and the impending signing of Lewis, nobody has had a better start to their offseason than the Magic."