Raptors could trade Dragic to trigger buyout: report
It’s another week, and yet another trade rumour has surfaced for Toronto Raptors guard Goran Dragic.
Since arriving in the offseason as part of the Kyle Lowry sign-and-trade deal, Dragic appeared in just five games in a Toronto uniform before eventually taking a personal leave from the team in late November.
Dragic ending up in another team’s uniform this season seems like an inevitability, but it doesn’t seem like his $19.4 million cap hit will be joining a new roster.
“It is believed that Dragic would be bought out by the team that acquires him should a trade materialize,” NBA insider Marc Stein wrote in his latest Substack newsletter.
Essentially, the Raptors and a second team would make a move with the salary cap in mind, allowing the second team to buy out Dragic, with a third team then signing him to a new contract.
“Multiple teams are expected to pursue Dragic if he indeed lands on the buyout market,” Stein added.
Stein’s reporting backs up a Saturday report from the Toronto Star’s Doug Smith, who said there was a “great deal of interest” league-wide in the 35-year-old point guard, and that he was “almost certain” to be dealt before the NBA trade deadline on February 10.
Stein added that the Raptors “will not entertain the prospect of simply buying [Dragic] out until all trade options are exhausted.”
However and whenever it ends, Dragic’s tenure in Toronto has been awkward at best, even after he backtracked from offseason comments that the Raptors were not his “preferred destination.” The 14-year NBA veteran had the unenviable task of joining a Raptors franchise prioritizing youth, leading to the team first reducing him to the bench and then removing him from the team’s rotations completely.
Just this past weekend, Dragic was spotted in Miami attending a Heat game, while posting a video of himself working out at the Heat’s facilities in December.