3. Norman Powell: January 23rd vs. Portland Trail Blazers
This return to Toronto is going to be an emotional one for a lot of people, Norman Powell included. What a journey it has been for Powell from where he started (a second-round pick out of UCLA) until now, locking himself up with a nice contract over in Portland after being dealt over to the Blazers at the last trade deadline.
The amount of love he showed while being on the Raptors, helping the entire fan base and basketball fans in general to “understand the grind.” Without a doubt, Powell was one of my favorite Raptors to watch, and having the opportunity to watch him grow as a player and get better and better every season was awesome to watch.
Norman Powell should get some love from Toronto Raptors fans.
The swap made sense, as the Raptors were able to bring on a similar player in Gary Trent Jr. that is both younger and slightly cheaper, while Powell gets to contribute to a Portland team that is trying to surround Damian Lillard with as much talent as possible. Powell did play against Toronto just days after the trade, but that doesn’t count because of Tampa.
It stings that he’s no longer on this team, but I’m glad he got to win an NBA championship with some of the players that he was brought up in the organization with and of course, lifelong friends he made along the way in Toronto. I can’t wait for the arena to erupt and give Powell a standing ovation when his video tribute is playing when he returns.