The Toronto Raptors trading beloved star DeMar DeRozan for Kawhi Leonard in the 2018 offseason signaled that this is a franchise that doesn’t shy away from making blockbuster deals. With Kevin Durant expressing his desire to be traded, it appears that Masai Ujiri can add yet another league-altering trade to his resume.
The KD era in Brooklyn was a roller coaster of emotions. This is thanks to the uncertainty of Kyrie Irving (still ongoing), James Harden lasting just over a year as a Net, a toe on the line in Game 7, and most recently getting swept in the first round by Boston.
Enter Toronto. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski called the Raptors “a team lurking” in the Durant sweepstakes, and from a distance, it’s not hard to see why. That would be one heck of a difference-maker in what has already become an incredibly stacked conference.
The Raptors are one of the few contenders that have control of all their future first-rounders, as well as a good mix of young assets and All-Star caliber players that could be used in a potential deal. Will Toronto actually get this deal done?
Should the Toronto Raptors want to acquire Kevin Durant?
A full-on rebuild was once seen as a viable possibility following the season in Tampa, but that has been thrown out the window at this point. There’s no doubt that the Raptors are going up, but are they content with just riding it out and continuing development?
Ujiri acknowledged the importance of development and patience, especially when you have a team as young as the Raptors, but this was said months before Durant requested a trade. Circumstances, and Toronto’s status on a trade of this magnitude, have changed.
Adding the 12-time All-Star, albeit losing multiple players thought to be long-term building blocks in a trade, would accelerate the Raptors from playoff contenders to championship contenders in just one offseason. However, Durant comes with his fair share of red flags.