The Toronto Raptors have been inundated with trade rumors about star big Pascal Siakam for months now. The team is starting to rebuild, and Siakam will be expected to lead a slightly torn-down roster to the playoffs if he’s still on the team.
Over the last two years, the organization continues to bring in young players to play with Siakam, drafting Scottie Barnes, swapping Norman Powell for Gary Trent Jr., drafting Scottie Barnes, and trading for Precious Achiuwa.
No matter how well he plays, it’s hard to imagine how the Raptors will compete for a championship in the next few years. Still, that doesn’t mean that they have to offload Siakam, especially when his value has been negatively impacted by some bizarre anti-Siakam sentiments around the league.
Teams like the Golden State Warriors, Sacramento Kings, and Los Angeles Clippers all have interest in Siakam, but all of them would be bringing him on as a secondary piece. Do these people not realize that Siakam is one of the best power forwards in the league, and should be treated as such?
The Toronto Raptors don’t have to trade Pascal Siakam.
Siakam shouldn’t be confused with Ben Simmons or Kristaps Porzingis, because he’s proved that he can be the second or third best player on a championship team. Simmons and Porzingis have flaws in their game that have been exposed in the playoffs.
Yes, he had a down year, but the Raptors shouldn’t sell low because of the team’s circumstances.
Even though he proved to be just as efficient a finisher while setting new career-best marks in assists and steals, the NBA at large seems to think Siakam turned into Kwame Brown last year. This means teams will try to swipe him for cheap. Considering what an anomaly that whole year was, Toronto needs to hold on to him.
It would be unforgivable if the Raptors traded Siakam for a lower-tier player and a decent draft pick. Siakam is 27 years old, and still has the potential to be a top 20 player.
Unlike Simmons and CJ McCollum, his postseason success compared with his individual accolades put him in a class all his own.
When you compare Siakam to other power forwards, it’s obvious he’s still one of the most valuable in the league. Julius Randle and Damontas Sabonis made the All-Star game last year in the east, but Randle had a horrible playoff series against the Atlanta Hawks and Sabonis’ resume isn’t close to Siakam’s.
Do you hear one single peep about New York or Indiana, both of whom are in the same tier as the Raptors, trading either one of them?
The teams that interested in Siakam because they know he can be an extremely valuable player to a championship contender. After all, he has proven he can be. That doesn’t mean the Raptors should blow it up and trade him when the league doesn’t value him like the star he is.
Although the relationship between Siakam and the Raptors might not be ideal, Toronto might want to hang on to him until he can re-establish himself as a star this upcoming season. If all goes as planned, we’ll see Siakam back in the All-Star game.