After almost a year of rumors and speculation, the Toronto Raptors pulled the trigger on a trade.
Toronto traded O.G. Anunoby, Precious Achiuwa and Malachi Flynn to the New York Knicks for RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley and a 2024 second-round pick, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Anunoby found himself in the center of trade rumors at last February’s trade deadline then to begin the 2023-24 season. With signs pointing to Anunoby declining his player option, it made sense to get something for him rather than letting him leave for nothing.
Pascal Siakam, who has been in plenty of rumors as well, gave his thoughts on the trade, via Eric Koreen of The Athletic:
“I think obviously it’s a difficult day. Change happens like that, it’s never easy. Probably the first experience of that for a lot of people. … I’ve seen these things happen.
OG was a big part of what we’ve done here. He’s an incredible human being and a great player. … I hope incredible things happen to him.”
For a Raptors team that is 12-20 and coming off a horrible loss against the Detroit Pistons, snapping their 28-game losing streak, Siakam says that he simply wants to win games at the end of the day, via Koreen:
“I wanna be happy. I wanna play meaningful basketball. I wanna win.
With Toronto seemingly wanting to retool and not enter a full on rebuild, it seems that Siakam’s time in Toronto may be coming to an end.
Masai Ujiri opted to trade for young talent over draft compensation, so expect the same kind of package if Siakam moves.
Scottie Barnes is the No. 1 option and the guy Toronto is going to build around. It makes sense to move off another expiring contract in Siakam to bring in more youth.
Toronto expected to continue to explore trades involving Siakam
The Anunoby trade felt like the first domino to fall, as it is now evident that the Raptors could move off from Siakam.
Shortly after the trade became official, Wojnarowski reported that Toronto is going to continue to explore trades for the 29-year-old.
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