Toronto Raptors: Pass or pursue on 3 rumored NBA trade deadline targets

Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports /
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Toronto Raptors, NBA trade deadline Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports
Toronto Raptors, NBA trade deadline Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports /

Should the Toronto Raptors trade Kyle Lowry to a contender?

After the 2019 Champion, the Raptors have maintained competitiveness but not at a Championship level. Last season they failed to get past the second round and this season looks like it will be much the same.

The rumors suggest that the Raptors should be selling Lowry to a contender and grabbing young players and assets before he leaves in the off-season to a contender anyway. The Raptors are seemingly out of the playoff race its possibly time to move on from Lowry – a nearly 35-year-old who is an unrestricted free agent going into this offseason.

Unfortunately for the aggregators, Michael Grange said (but walked that back in the same article) that: Lowry is not going to be dealt before the March 25 NBA trade deadline.

Any contender would gladly take on Lowry but the two teams (Maybe the Nuggets) that seemingly have the assets and the position to contender are the Philadelphia 76ers and Miami Heat.

Trade to the Philadelphia 76ers

In the Harden sweepstakes, Tyreese Maxey was a key part of the Sixers’ offer, now Maxey is possibly the key piece in a trade for Kyle Lowry.

To make the salaries work the Sixers would have to include former Raptor Danny Green, Mike Scott and one of Vincent Poirier, Tony Bradley or Terrance Ferguson. This means that the Raptors would be going into a full rebuild around Fred VanVleet, Pascal Siakam, OG Anunoby and Tyreese Maxey.

This trade leans better for the Sixers, getting their hometown hero and a half-court conductor would help the playoff run significantly. For the Raptors, this trade is not great as the only real assets is Maxey (and a pick if you are lucky), who has shown flashes in frankly meaningless, COVID riddled regular-season games, however, he’s only a rookie.

If Lowry wants out and prefers to go home the Raptors could take this, but the Heat also have an interesting offer.


Trade to the Miami Heat

The Miami Heat have struggled to replicate their phenomenal Bubble play during the regular season and the rumors suggest that Lowry would be a perfect fit to help the Heat get back into contention.

The key trade piece is Tyler Herro, who erupted in the Eastern Conference Finals for the Heat last season.

The salary matching requires Kelly Olynyk and Goran Dragic (one-year Bird restriction, can veto any trade. If vetoed use Andre Iguodala) and Herro. Now is his second season Herro has shown to be a proven playoff threat and fits the Raptors well as a less ball-dominant guard (Maxey seems like more of a point guard) and floor spacer with Siakam and VanVleet.

If the Raptors hand is forced to trade Lowry (which seems unlikely) the Miami Heat’s offer is slightly better than the Sixers, because of Herro’s short track record thus far and the hypothetically better fit with the current Raptors core.


However, if Lowry wants to stay with the team that is probably the best option. There aren’t any superstar free agents left in this free agency class and looking after your franchise player is going to be beneficial for the progression of the young core.

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