Raptors rise on National Basketball Association championship odds after dealing DeRozan

19 July, 2018, 12:27 | Author: Malcolm Quinn
  • Kawhi Leonard

As the world of social media is again fluttering with discussions on how the Spurs core got shattered and on which team won the trade, San Antonio's living legend head coach Gregg Popovich plainly stated that everyone should just turn away from the past. "Soon you'll understand. Don't disturb".

Toronto sends four-time All-Star DeRozan, center Jakob Poeltl and a 2019 protected (1-20) first-round pick to the Spurs for Leonard and guard Danny Green. "If Toronto can keep him it's a good deal for Toronto because they get the best player in the deal", one rival National Basketball Association executive said.

DeRozan reportedly met with the Raptors in Las Vegas and was told he wouldn't be traded.

Leonard, of course, asked for a trade earlier in the offseason with an eye on heading to Los Angeles to be a Laker or a Clipper. The 2014 NBA Finals MVP played just nine games with the Spurs this past season while battling an array of injuries, and has reportedly expressed a lack of interest in joining the Raptors.

DeMar DeRozan
GETTYThe Spurs have acquired De Mar DeRozan in place of wantaway star Leonard

According to Bodog, the Raptors are now 18/1* to capture their first franchise title in 2018-19, an improvement from 30/1, which they were listed at before the deal was made official. According to ESPN, disgruntled Spurs star Kawhi Leonard is expected to be traded to the Toronto Raptors. DeRozan will nearly certainly give San Antonio more next year than Leonard gave the Spurs last year. We wish him well, but at this point, it's time to move on. Second-best record in the regular season a year ago, behind only Houston.

Despite being named the NBA's Coach of the Year, Casey was sacked and replaced by assistant Nick Nurse.

Two other teams that were also linked to Leonard had their odds impacted by the deal. "It's a gamble, but Toronto is probably at the point where, 'We've probably only got one more run with this team anyhow so let's mix it up.' And if they have to rebuild or retool, they could do it without the [$83] million they owe DeRozan".


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