Raptor’s trading destination for DeMar DeRozan?

NBA Analytics Network

The Toronto Raptors showed they could handle the big boys in the Eastern Conference last NBA season. When many people thought they would rebuild, they made a run into the postseason and finished as the fifth seed. This season, they have their work cut out if they want to replicate that success.

Toronto is currently in the last spot in the NBA Play-In Tournament ranked 10th in the Eastern Conference with a 15-18 record. While they are still a sloppy team, they need an infusion of talent to help them move back up the standings and improve on the field.

Adding a real center is what many people think they need most, as Pascal Siakam is currently holding things in the middle, with Scottie Barnes and OG Anunoby in the front seats. Their lack of size was a glaring weakness last season as the Philadelphia 76ers crushed them domestically on their playoff series, which remains one this season.

Another area for improvement is that the Raptors need help to score in half-court sets. They are near the bottom of the half court offense this season, another indicator of a team that will struggle in the postseason as play slows down and efficiency becomes much more important.

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: DeMar DeRozan, Chicago Bulls & Toronto Raptors Updates

A reunion with DeMar DeRozan may need a shake-up kind of dream trading scenario that unlocks their ability to make another run just like they did in 2019 when they acquired Kawhi Leonard? While DeRozan isn’t on Leonard’s level, and not many people are, he could have a similar impact as his strengths are exactly what the Raptors need.

Toronto has a strong roster, but they lack that No. 1 option. DeRozan could fill that role, with Siakam, Anunoby, Fred VanVleet and Barnes behind him. We’ve seen what clear, designated roles can do for teams and players, as everyone gets a chance to get comfortable and into a rhythm.

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: DeMar DeRozan, Chicago Bulls & Toronto Raptors Updates

The Chicago Bulls may want to wait to make a trade, but eventually one could come as they’re struggling mightily this season. Without much of a path to turn things around, Chicago could choose to shake things up and do a semi-rebuild, seeking to reshape the roster around Zach LaVine, as he and DeRozan reportedly have increasing tension.

With a major decision coming up this off-season as DeRozan is seeking an extension, the Bulls can now get some value in return for him without issuing another long-term contract on a player who will be 34 when the 2023/24 season begins. That seems like a better course of action given the team’s current landscape.

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