Toronto Raptors have not expressed their willingness to part ways with Goran Dragic, who was the centerpiece of the Kyle Lowry trade to the Miami Heat.
According to John Hollinger of the Athletic, the Raptors’ intentions on Dragic might change in the future and find an ‘improving deal’ to send the veteran guard to the Dallas Mavericks.
“Finally, there’s the cap room angle that Toronto completely punted on by sending out Kyle Lowry in a sign-and-trade for Goran Dragic and Precious Achiuwa. Dragic is a nice backup at this point but makes $19.44 million, so his deal has significant negative equity. To take that deal on instead of using about $25 million in cap space, the Raptors’ only reward was Achiuwa, an interesting big man prospect due to his motor and athleticism but one who lost his rotation spot to Dewayne Dedmon last year and struggles with feel, shooting and dribble blindness.
Before I finish here, I will offer one carrot: There is some “improving the deal” potential that could be a factor here. One still suspects Toronto might have gone the Dragic route because it had another trade set up to get value for him. In particular, it’s possible the Raptors and Mavs are waiting until Oct. 1 — when the salary of Dallas big man Moses Brown can be aggregated — to complete a deal that would send Brown, Dwight Powell and one other small contract from Dallas to Toronto for Dragic. Depending on the player/asset combination, that could yield a rethink on the wisdom of the Raptors’ overall strategy, Hollinger wrote.
Dragic could be an important factor in a potential trade to Dallas, as he can become the veteran leader of a young group of players, having also the experience playing with Luka Doncic on the Slovenian national team.
On the other side, the Raptors will continue re-tooling their roster around Pascal Siakam and Fred VanFleet in hope of making the postseason with a relatively young group of players.