Raptors Seek West, Mull Ross, Valanciunas Deal

4:42pm: It’s “all quiet on the trade front” for the Raptors at present, tweets Ryan Wolstat of the Toronto Sun.

11:08am: The Pacers are leaning against trading West unless he makes a push for a trade, according to Marc Stein of ESPN.com, who believes that the power forward is unlikely to agitate for such a move (Twitter links).

10:41am: The Raptors are pursuing David West and they have considered trading Terrence Ross if they receive the right offer, reports Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link). Executives from opponents who’ve spoken with the Raptors tell Kennedy that Toronto has thought about packaging Terrence Ross and Jonas Valanciunas for a star (Twitter links). The Raptors have been listening to offers for Ross, several league sources tell Grantland’s Zach Lowe. Still, Lowe senses the team will keep him, as he says on Twitter, and a Raptors source told Sean Deveney of The Sporting News that the team had “absolutely not” engaged teams about dealing for the former eighth overall pick (on Twitter). Ross has struggled of late but Toronto coach Dwane Casey remains a fan, Deveney hears (Twitter link).

Fellow Basketball Insiders scribe Steve Kyler wrote a couple of weeks ago that league sources had mentioned West’s name, among others, in connection with the Raptors. Lowe heard earlier this season that the Pacers were open to dealing West for a first-round pick, but that talk of that had dried up. The Grantland columnist makes much the same point in his latest dispatch, writing that West has been “available off and on” for that first-rounder over the last couple of months, according to several league sources. Pacers president of basketball operations Larry Bird said recently that West hadn’t given him an indication of whether he’d exercise his $12.6MM player option for next season.

The Raptors are within $1MM of the tax threshold, so taking in West’s $12MM for this season would be troublesome unless they offloaded others. Ross and Valanciunas only make about $6.472MM combined this season on their rookie scale contracts, each of which runs through 2015/16, though West doesn’t fit the description of the star they’re apparently looking for. The team hadn’t been making it any easier to deal Ross in spite of the small forward’s disappointing play, as Deveney wrote late last month, and there hasn’t been much chatter surrounding Valanciunas, the fifth overall pick from 2011, so it would appear as though the Raptors would want a marquee return. That’s a problem for any potential deal, since there don’t appear to be any stars on the trade market, as Kennedy notes via Twitter.

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