The Toronto Raptors have engaged in a very awkward trade sweepstakes centered around Pascal Siakam. The team has openly courted offers while refusing to give him any clarity on their plans to either trade him or give him an extension that locks him in for the next few years.
Masai Ujiri hasn't handled this situation well, as he seems to fluctuate between praising Pascal's development and looking for quality offers across the league for his services. This has trickled down to the locker room, as the team confirmed after their loss to the historically bad Detroit Pistons.
Siakam's relationship with the Raptors is not only deteriorating, but it is crumbling in such a strange and self-inflicted way that it comes across as weirdly antagonistic. According to Josh Lewenberg of TSN, the Raptors are seemingly working overtime to make sure they have as bad a relationship with Siakam as possible.
After losing to the Chicago Bulls in the play-in, a source close to Pascal confirmed that the front office "cut off almost all communication with Siakam last summer, leading the seven-year vet to wonder whether he was being punished." With Siakam in the final year of his contract, this decision comes off as oddly punitive.
More Raptors news
- According to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, the Boston Celtics are actively looking for frontcourt help and have long been an admirer of Raptors power forward Chris Boucher. Toronto is thin on the bench right now, but Boucher could theoretically be a part of a bigger deal or three-team swap.
- Raptors point guard Dennis Schroder said that he wants to stay under Darko Rajakovic in Toronto for the foreseeable future. "At the end of the day, I just want to be here long-term as well, and create winning habits and be in a winning organization," Schroder said on The Raptors Show.
- Things keep going from bad to worse for Los Angeles Lakers coach Darvin Ham. Fischer reported that there are many within the Lakers organization who believe that Ham is not the guy who can "get this thing over the hump." Considering he is fresh off a Conference Finals, this counts as a fall from grace.
- Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green has officially returned from what was deemed an indefinite suspension. After meetings with the Warriors and the NBA themselves, Green returned to action after missing 12 games for striking Suns center Jusuf Nurkic while continuing his pattern of violent on-court behavior.