Atlantic Notes: Raptors, Hayward, Knicks, Vassell, Nets

An accelerated timeline for the start of the 2020/21 NBA season would reduce the likelihood of the Raptors being able to return to their home arena in Toronto. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, there are still significant restrictions on international travel from the U.S. to Canada and it seems unlikely that will change too drastically within the next two months.

With that in mind, Eric Koreen of The Athletic weighs the pros and cons of several possible temporary homes for the Raptors in 2020/21. While Louisville – briefly mentioned as a possibility last weekdoesn’t appear to be a realistic option, Koreen believes there are several other alternatives that could work.

Buffalo, Newark, Kansas City, and Fort Myers are some of the cities that might make sense for the Raptors, according to Koreen, who adds that sharing a home arena with one of the NBA’s other Eastern Conference teams could also be a possibility — especially since those arenas likely won’t be hosting concerts or other major events anytime soon.

Here’s more from around the Atlantic:

  • Although it seems likely that Gordon Hayward will opt into the final year of his $34MM contract with the Celtics, agent Mark Bartelstein figures to do his homework and quietly survey the landscape to determine whether there’s a scenario in which Hayward could secure a lucrative, longer-term deal in Boston or elsewhere, writes Chris Forsberg of NBC Sports Boston. ESPN’s Bobby Marks and Zach Lowe discussed that possibility on The Lowe Post podcast on Monday, likening Hayward’s situation to that of Al Horford a year ago, as John Karalis of relays.
  • A team tracking Devin Vassell told Ian Begley of that the Knicks are collecting “a ton” of information on the former Florida State wing. The Knicks are one of several teams in the top 10 of the draft with Vassell on their radar, says Begley.
  • Brian Lewis of The New York Post identifies former Arkansas sharpshooter Isaiah Joe as a draft sleeper who may be of interest to the Nets. Joe is the No. 48 prospect on ESPN’s big board, while Brooklyn holds the Nos. 19 and 55 picks.
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23 thoughts on “Atlantic Notes: Raptors, Hayward, Knicks, Vassell, Nets

  1. Sillivan

    Knicks view Cole as a franchise player but has zero plan to take him at 8

  2. Sillivan

    Hottest commodity with negative value will be Horford
    When it’s about Hayward ESPN talks about Horford

  3. Curtisrowe

    I can see Hayward bouncing. He has been injured a LOT as we all know. If he can get four years at 75 million that might be a lot more than he could get over the next four years than if he plays for 34 mill next year and gets hurt again.

    • specialfriedrice

      I don’t…fact of the matter is, he will not receive that kind of money again…ever…next years free agency has so much more money to spend, that it is inevitable though that someone will overpay him @ $20m pa for sure…I would ride it out for that $34m if I was him too.

  4. KnickerbockerAl

    Hayward is not turning down 34 million. But he has to show he is healthy enough to to start or be a rotation player. Ha hasn’t proven it yet. As of now no one is giving him more than ME. A he’ll be 31 next yr. Why would anyone give him 4-5 yrs. He’s lucky to get 3 yrs at 30 mill. Celtics will move him by deadline if not sooner. He plays no part on their team.

    • Curtisrowe

      He averaged 17 points 7 boards and 4 assists in 33 minutes a game. He plays a huge part on their team. He’s just made of glass.

      • Is he made of glass or has he been unlucky? To be fair, I’m looking through green tinted glasses, but I personally don’t think his game is one that’s particularly injury prone (not like a Derrick Rose or something where I can see given his aggressiveness why he was injured).

        Unrelated, I wonder the same thing about Romeo Langford.

  5. KnickerbockerAl

    Vassell is a nice player. No way he goes ahead of Okongwu, Halliburton, Hayes, Okoro in that order. At 8 it’s probably Halliburton, Hayes, Okoro. Whoever is left. But if Okongwu drops. Knicks gotta take him. Toppin or Okongwu would fit great next to Mitch. I just don’t see any one of them dropping to 8. Love Halliburton but Hayes has grown on me. Been watching lot of video.

    • x%sure

      Watching videos of Hayes and Ball makes me wonder if there is a new “international” style of ball movement brewing. I have to get around to checking out Bolmaro and Maledon.
      Maybe it confused Hampton lol

  6. stevep-4

    Maybe Isaiah Joe can get on a team with Chris Paul, Paul George, Lance Thomas, and Jonathan Isaac. Matt Thomas and Courtney Lee could come off the bench.

  7. andremets

    Would any of the lottery teams send this year’s lottery pick to the Knicks for the clippers’ ‘20 pick (#27) and a Mavericks pick (‘21, probably in the low 20s)? Or would the Knock have to take on a bad contract too?

    • hiflew

      No one is trading a lottery pick for only two picks in the low 20s. Just not going to happen. I don’t even see any teams in the low lottery that even have bad deals to include. The closest thing would be the Kings with Harrison Barnes and/or Buddy Hield, but I don’t think they would move either as just a salary dump.

  8. hiflew

    The Knicks taking Devin Vassell at 8 just reminds me of another #8 pick the Knicks made…Jordan Hill taken one pick after Steph Curry. If I was a Pistons fan with my team picking at 7, I would hope the same thing happens.

  9. formerlyz

    I actually have the Knicks getting Isaiah Joe with their 27th pick, but I had the Nets taking a somewhat similar type of player at 19.

    Not surprising to see the interest in Vassell, as I’ve said, his positional value is high, and there are several teams that could use him on the wing, which is why I like some of the wings ranked in the 10-40 range that could go higher in the draft than people expect, barring trades, obviously

  10. x%sure

    A clever poster on the Athletic pointed out that Cleveland could well be a temporary home for the Raptors because they already have uniforms that say “the North” and Cleveland is also called the Northcoast. Toronto could be the Northside of the Northcoast, instead of the lake!

    Also, Lebron is gone.

    Seriously why would high-up decision-makers send them to a city linked with a covid problem— or next to it like Newark? Missouri has a high rate statistically.
    Koreen: ” Florida is, ummm, unpredictable in terms of its health protocols… and a tough blow for players who just spent months living in Disney World. “

  11. david-45

    hawks want to trade out of the lottery and mavs want to jump into lottery. i would love to see between those two teams again. it worked out well for both of them…. not sure what the hawks would want from the mavs but i want the mavs to draft Devin Vassel

  12. Vassel would be my pick for the Knicks at #8, if he’s there. I’m not sure he will be, but, either way, they’ll have their choice among a group of good players. The trick will be to get another good one in this draft using #27, #38 and/or other assets.

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