With the recent news that the Toronto Raptors are now betting favourites to land the disgruntled San Antonio Spur superstar, Kawhi Leonard, let’s take a look at some potential trade packages that they can offer.
A Star in Exchange for a Star
If the Spurs are hell-bent on receiving a star in exchange for Kawhi, DeMar DeRozan may be a player the Spurs would consider trading for. DeMar is one of the elite guards in the NBA, previously earning both All-Star and All-NBA recognition. He may not be the prototypical San Antonio Spur, but if anyone can get the most out his skill-set it would be Greg Popovich. The Raptors would likely have to include one of their young players and a few picks, and to make the salaries work, Danny Green may have to be included too.
A Collection of Potential All-Stars
If the Spurs are looking for players with the most amount of potential, perhaps a package that included Valanciunas, Wright and Anunoby would be enough to entice the Spurs. Valanciunas has shown flashes of greatness with the Raptors, but just hasn’t been given a leash long enough to break through. Perhaps a coach like Popovich could bring the absolute best out of the Lithuanian big man, propelling him to a couple of all-star games in the near future.
As for Wright and Anunoby, they are both very young players who have shown that they are both more than capable of starting in this league. Both players have very bright futures, and the Spurs would likely jump at the chance to throw them into the system they have down in San Antonio. As was the case before, a couple of Toronto’s picks will likely be needed to sweeten the deal.
A Collection of Young Players That Fit the Spurs System
Perhaps what the Spurs are looking for is the biggest pool of young talent that they can get in exchange for their disgruntled star. In that case, the Raptors can offer the Spurs quite a haul. All four of the players listed above would likely fit seamlessly into the Spurs’ system, and you’d have to like Popovich’s chances of turning at least one of these players into a potential all-star. This would obviously break up Toronto’s ultra-efficient bench unit, but with a starting core of Kyle Lowry, DeMar DeRozan and Kawhi Leonard, there would be little need for such a deep bench. Once again, the Raptors would likely have to part with a pick or two to complete a deal like this.
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Photo courtesy of Sports Illustrated