February 9, 2023

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What should the Raptors expect before the trade deadline?

Tonight’s beautiful and emotional win at the Garden against the Knicks didn’t erase many, if not many, problems. Toronto Raptors Going into this season.

After an unexpected fifth place finish Eastern Conference And a tight first round of the play-offs against the great Philadelphia 76ers, surely expect some more from the Canadiens. The current record reads 20 wins and 24 losses, with the team hanging on to the play-in train. He will have to decide long ago what to do, whether to continue to fight for the postseason or aim for the lottery.

strategy Nick Nurse Making the players the same and too similar in character doesn’t seem to have paid off. As we know, the Raptors lack a true center and have been playing with a small-ball quintet for more than a year. Precious Achihua And Pascal Siagam Often alternating in the role of fake number 5, with Scotty Barnes And OG Anunobi Now the reversers in the defensive rotation.

However, the team’s shooting percentage is down compared to last season, a poor 32% overall. Many of the young players on the roster don’t seem to have made a big leap in quality, and for this reason management will likely be considering making a move before the trade deadline.

Fred VanVleet, one of the most positive notes of the season, still proving to be an elite shooter and true leader. He had a very solid performance tonight in Madison, pulling his team to an important win. There is a player-option worth more than $22 million for next year’s No. 23, which he will decline, according to multiple insiders.

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To avoid losing its offensive pillar in the dark, Toronto will need to watch its backline carefully. VanVleet In fact, he had wanted a change of scenery for some time, and settle on an ambitious and competitive franchise. There is certainly a market for the Wichita State product, and for this reason management could consider selling him before the natural expiration of his contract and land some interesting assets that could improve the team.

Another outfielder Gary Trent Jr, this year has been very intermittent and subject to many physical problems. Duke has a player option worth about 18 million for next year, but Toronto wants to trade it for a reliable shooter. Names are made Evan Fournier, Joe Harris And Duncan RobinsonAll three are on their way with their respective owners.

And finally Thaddeus Young, which will find little place in circulation, is about to leave Canada. The 34-year-old big man, who was renewed with the franchise this summer, can still carve out a major contender role for himself. The Raptors gave up a first-round pick this year to get him last year (later revealed Malachi Branham) to the San Antonio Spurs.

So expect more than one movement in Toronto that could be an unexpected protagonist in the coming weeks. Masai UjiriA know-it-all about spot-on trading, he studies the situation carefully and waits to give his team another market win.