For the first time, there’s real talk from Toronto that the Raptors might keep point guard Kyle Lowry for the rest of the season, writes Marc Stein of ESPN.com. Word is that GM Masai Ujiri won’t commit to any firm position and is open to moving Lowry if the offers suddenly get sweeter. However, team officials appear to prefer the idea of going for what would be just Toronto’s third playoff berth in 13 seasons rather than attempt a colossal tank and go from .500 to Andrew Wiggins territory. Here’s more from Stein’s latest offering..
- The Knicks were linked heavily to Lowry just a few weeks ago but they’re now said to want to work their way into the bidding for Nuggets guard Andre Miller. Unfortunately for them, they have the same problem in chasing Miller that they did with Lowry: a lack of assets to offer.
- The Knicks are still getting calls for center Tyson Chandler but sources close to the situation tell Stein that they’re brushing each one of them off. At this stage, New York has no interest in parting with its defensive anchor, which makes sense if the Knicks are set on re-signing Carmelo Anthony this summer.
- The Magic, meanwhile, continue to stiff-arm teams registering interest in shooting guard Arron Afflalo. The difference there, though, is that some rival clubs aren’t convinced that the Magic’s stance is as absolute as the Knicks’ stance is with Chandler. The lure of the 2014 draft is strong, but it’s not out of the question that someone could offer up a first-round pick for Afflalo. In that event, Orlando would have to give serious thought to pulling the trigger.