“Can we stop this?“: Raptors coach Nurse wants Clippers to stop stealing his players

Mar 17 2022, 4:12 pm

Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse hasn’t picked up too many enemies in the NBA, but it’d be hard to fault him if he wasn’t the biggest fan of the Los Angeles Clippers.

When a Clippers reporter asked Nurse prior to Wednesday night’s game about the fact that three members of the 2019 championship roster — Kawhi Leonard, Norman Powell, and Serge Ibaka — had since joined the LA side, Nurse fired back with a joke.

“Who are you guys taking this year?” Nurse playfully asked. “Can we stop this?”

The Raptors have a 4-4 record against the Clippers since Leonard infamously departed for California in free agency in 2019. Toronto got the best of LA on Wednesday, topping them by a 103-100 score.

None of the three ex-Raptors suited up against Nurse Wednesday, though.

Leonard has been sidelined all season with an ACL tear suffered in last year’s playoffs, while Powell has been out over the last month with a fractured bone in his foot. Meanwhile, Ibaka was shipped to the Milwaukee Bucks at last month’s trade deadline.

Since leaving Toronto, Leonard has played four games against the Raptors. Powell played twice as a member of the Portland Trail Blazers, but has yet to face them after being traded to LA. Ibaka made a visit to Toronto in December with the Clippers before being sent to the Bucks.

The Raptors do have ten players signed for next season, including seven of their top eight players when it comes to minutes played this year. But if the Clippers are simply in the market for any Toronto player this summer, keep an eye out for either Chris Boucher or Yuta Watanabe to be the latest Raptor to make a move to the West Coast.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

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