The Raptors are currently enjoying one of the most successful runs in franchise history and GM Masai Ujiri needs to capitalize on that momentum by swinging for the fences at the trade deadline this season, Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca writes. The most effective way to add to the team’s core would be to use the team’s surplus of first round picks, four in the next two years, which could land an impact player, Grange notes. The Sportsnet scribe does acknowledge the team may face stiff competition to re-sign future unrestricted free agent DeMar DeRozan, and building around him could be a risky proposition as a result, but it would be folly for the team to not go all in this season and shoot for the stars in the trade market.
Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:
- Joel Embiid‘s hiring of Leon Rose as his new agent is a positive move for the Sixers, Jake Fischer of Liberty Ballers opines (on Twitter). The scribe points to Rose being based out of New Jersey and his history of representing Sixers players as reasons for his optimism. The center’s former agency, the Wasserman Group, is based out of Los Angeles.
- The continued emergence of rookie Jerian Grant changes the dynamic of the Knicks‘ offense, and the point guard’s energy and defense have become assets to the team, Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com writes.
- The Celtics have recalled power forward Jordan Mickey and point guard Terry Rozier from their D-League affiliate in Maine, the team announced. This was Mickey’s ninth stint with the Red Claws on the season and Rozier’s fifth.