The Toronto Raptors rumors are flying around at breakneck speed lately, as Masai Ujiri needs to figure out a way to make sure they have enough frontcourt depth. One potential avenue worth exploring is a trade for Houston Rockets center Daniel Theis.
Though Theis signed a four-year, $35 million contract with Houston in the offseason, Stephen Silas put him on the bench in favor of giving some of his younger players extra burn. Theis’ stint in Houston might be a short one if the latest buzz is correct.
After Kevin O’Connor reported early in the season that Theis could be had in trade talks following the emergence of Alperen Sengun, it appears that the market for the German big is heating up. Toronto is reportedly interested in acquiring the services of the rock-solid defensive big.
Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report claimed that the Raptors have been mentioned as a potential landing spot for Theis in trade talks. While he also mentioned that the interest in Myles Turner and Jakob Poeltl is real, Theis might be a more realistic option for Toronto to acquire given his performance and contract.
Toronto Raptors rumors: What would Daniel Theis bring?
Theis is averaging 8.4 points and 5.0 rebounds per game this season, which is right around the career averages he’s amassed. Raptors fans might remember Theis as a thorn in their side, as his tenure with the Celtics helped him carve out a role as an invaluable interior presence.
There are pros and cons to this move. On one hand, Toronto would be giving up capital to acquire a non-shooter that lacks amazing switchability in the first year of a very long contract. On the other, he can rebound and protect the rim. Toronto needs guys who can do both of those things in the worst way.
Toronto already has Khem Birch, Precious Achiuwa, and Chris Boucher fighting for minutes. One of them would have to go to Houston in order to bring Theis to town. Boucher’s impending free agency and Birch’s similar style of play make them more likely to be moved than Achiuwa.
While Theis did essentially fall out of the rotation in the first year of a four-year contract with Houston, it should be noted that the Rockets have the league’s worst defense. Perhaps a little more Theis might not be the worst idea in the world? After all, he has an accomplished history of rim protection with Boston.
Theis won’t walk into Toronto and give this bench relevancy, but he’s a solid NBA center with enough physicality at the rim to become a weapon in some capacity on both ends of the floor. That’s worth trading for given the situation Ujiri finds himself in.