The Toronto Raptors are one of a handful of teams that are trying to pursue Kevin Durant in trade talks. Given Toronto’s upward trajectory and Durant’s frustration with the Brooklyn Nets, the two sides coming together on an agreement seem like something with a nonzero chance of happening.
From a basketball point of view, the Raptors are in a unique spot in that they can acquire Durant while keeping at least 40% of their long-term starting lineup intact. One of the main obstacles to getting this deal done is Durant’s desire to play his next four years in Toronto.
Even though Toronto has never been a marquee trade destination for superstars like Los Angeles or Miami, the Raptors could be an enticing team for Durant. After all, he has gone on record several times to praise what the Raptors have built in the past and are building currently.
Durant was quoted as saying that he was a huge Raptors fan growing up, citing his admiration for Vince Carter. On top of the fact that Durant has been very open in his praise for many Raptors he could end up playing aside in Toronto, it seems like KD would be open to wearing red and black.
Kevin Durant has praised the Toronto Raptors multiple times.
Durant said that Fred VanVleet, who became the first undrafted player to make an All-Star team in over a decade, is “a dog in the league.” Assuming that VanVleet is not included in the trade package, they could make for a nice 1-2 punch on the offensive end.
After an impressive first showing in which Scottie Barnes recorded five steals against the Nets, Durant was quick to praise the Toronto dynamo. Durant was simply stunned that Barnes was this productive at just 20 years old. Perhaps he wouldn’t mind playing alongside Scottie north of the border.
On David Letterman’s Netflix show, Durant said that he has the most fun in a visiting arena when he goes up north to play in Toronto. That’s a lot of positive comments for a player who hasn’t necessarily shut down any talk of going to Canada.
The Raptors still face very long odds when it comes to acquiring Durant, but his past praise of the organization and city might be a sign that he would be willing to suit up for Toronto if a trade is consummated. Durant could finally realize his dream of playing with the purple dinosaur unis during a Throwback night.