Grade the Trade: Raptors take on famous son to help West contender in new pitch

The Toronto Raptors could use their cap space to facillitate deals among better teams this summer. Does this deal move the needle for the Raptors?
Chris Boucher, Toronto Raptors and Tim Hardaway Jr., Dallas Mavericks
Chris Boucher, Toronto Raptors and Tim Hardaway Jr., Dallas Mavericks / Tim Heitman/GettyImages
2 of 3

Laying out the trade

The Dallas Mavericks have the first item on a championship checklist already taken care of: they have a Top-10 player, and honestly a Top-5 player. Luka Doncic is an incredibly skilled and gifted basketball player. They also have a co-star in Kyrie Irving, a pair of defensive anchors in Dereck Lively II and Daniel Gafford, and a high-energy third option in P.J. Washington thriving in a winning environment.

What they still need to add are reliable 3-point shooters who can survive defensively and fill out the rotation, both to elevate the team during the regular season and to give head coach Jason Kidd lineup versatility in the playoffs. In Raptors championship parlance, they have Kawhi Leonard, Kyle Lowry, Pascal Siakam and Marc Gasol, but they need to add Danny Green and Fred VanVleet (the 2019 version).

Popular trade website Fanspo shared one "offseason plan" for the Dallas Mavericks that would involve a massive four-team trade to help reshape the Mavericks' role players. This deal would involve the Raptors stepping in to take on the salary of Tim Hardaway Jr., allowing the Mavericks the salary flexibility to sign Gary Trent Jr. in a sign-and-trade action.

Here is the full sequence of moves:

Setting aside the full scope of the deal, what would this mean for Toronto specifically? Essentially, they would be taking on the $16.1 million salary of Tim Hardaway Jr. and eschewing the right to re-sign Trent themselves, and in return, the Mavericks would send a trio of second-round picks.

Dallas would come out of this deal with a deep roster of wings around their stars. The Raptors would be committing most of their cap space to Hardaway, a talented on-ball scorer and off-ball shooter whose playmaking and defense make him something of a one-dimensional player. He is clearly overpaid at $16.1 million, but do the draft picks make this a deal worth making?