The Toronto Raptors have found themselves on the fringes of the Damian Lillard trade debacle. While they are almost assuredly not going to trade for the disgruntled Portland Trail Blazers star, they could end up getting some quality assets in return as a third team.
The Raptors had a degree of interest in trading for Miami Heat star Tyler Herro. Not only has Portland reportedly been underwhelmed with a Miami trade package centered around Herro, but the Raptors are a team that desperately needs a player with his skill set.
With Lillard trying everything in his power to force a trade to Miami and Portland fighting back by refusing to grant his wish, trade talks have slowed to a crawl so far. The latest rumors make it seem like there is even less of a chance Lillard gets moved soon.
According to Brian Windhorst of the Hoop Collective podcast, the market for Lillard has slowed to a crawl amid Portland’s ambivalence to trade Dame to Miami. The Raptors must also be disappointed with this move, as they might miss out on their chance to add Herro.
NBA rumors: Toronto Raptors’ chances of getting Tyler Herro minimal
While Gary Trent Jr. has shown to be a quality starting shooting guard in this league, Herro might be an exaggerated, improved version. The former Sixth Man of the Year has topped 20 points per game in each of the last two seasons, shooting well above average from 3-point range.
While Herro is a poor defender who is owed a good chunk of change, the Raptors might be motivated to jump into a Lillard deal for Herro, as both OG Anunoby and Pascal Siakam could hit the open market as free agents in the near future.
The trade market as a whole seems to be slowing down to a crawl. Not only has Lillard found it incredibly difficult to leave Portland, but all of the Siakam buzz has died down lately. James Harden went as far as to call his top executive a liar, and he is still no sure thing to be moved anytime soon.
The Raptors need to keep their eyes peeled for movement on the Herro front, as he could still be available if Portland finally relents and gives up Lillard. However, Raptors fans shouldn’t necessarily expect a big move, as starting the year with their current core seems more likely.