These 3 Toronto Raptors can be traded after December 15 deadline

TORONTO, ON - NOVEMBER 26: Fred VanVleet #23 and Juancho Hernangomez #41 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - NOVEMBER 26: Fred VanVleet #23 and Juancho Hernangomez #41 of the Toronto Raptors (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images) /
1 of 3

The Toronto Raptors will likely be an active player in talks before the 2023 trade deadline comes up. The East is a chaotic mess right now, so a trade might be the best way for Masai Ujiri to set his club apart from the rest and mold yet another winner north of the border.

The were active in the offseason, retaining Thad Young and Chris Boucher while adding Juancho Hernangomez and Otto Porter Jr. via free agency. Though the bench still hasn’t been amazing, there’s been a clear upgrade from last season to this one, which could come into play when the playoffs roll around.

December 15 is an important day on the NBA calendar. Most players who signed contracts with their new teams can now officially be traded. Trade season will kick off in earnest after this date, as tanking teams will try to get Victor Wembanyama while contenders look to add pieces.

These three Raptors players will be eligible for trades in the next few days, meaning that Ujiri can really start to figure out which players will be potential chips that sweeten the pot for any enticed teams out there. A trade isn’t definite, but this trio should stay on their toes.

These 3 Toronto Raptors trade chips can be moved after December 15

3. PF Juancho Hernangomez

Hernangomez went from a player who was completely out of the rotation when he started this season to someone that has been very hard to drop from the nine-man lineup when he’s playing at his best. He looks much better than he did with Boston or Utah last year.

Since a November 11 loss against Oklahoma City, Hernangomez has averaged 6.0 points and 5.5 rebounds per game while making 53% of his shots and 36% of his 3-pointers. An ankle sprain was the only thing that could slow him down, as Juancho was earning starts while injuries befell the rest of the roster.

The Toronto Raptors have been impressed by Juancho Hernangomez.

Given his relatively paltry salary, Hernangomez may not be viewed by many as a trade chip the Raptors can use. However, if he keeps playing like this and Toronto wants to integrate Precious Achiuwa back into an eight-man rotation, they could include him in a deal to recoup draft capital.

Bo Cruz came into Toronto as more sizzle than steak, given his Hustle performance that helped him overtake Shaquille O’Neal and come in just behind Ray Allen on the all-time NBA player actor list. However, his play in the last few weeks doesn’t look to be a fluke, as a healthy Hernangomez is a valuable NBA rotation player.