Raptors GM Bobby Webster updates Goran Dragic situation ahead of trade deadline

Feb 8 2022, 7:39 pm

Goran Dragic hasn’t played for the Toronto Raptors since November but remains a topic of discussion nearly every day.

Ahead of Thursday’s NBA trade deadline, the 35-year-old guard and his $19.4 million expiring contract represent one of Toronto’s best assets that will likely be on the move this week.

“They kind of know the game we’re in, the writing on the wall,” Raptors GM Bobby Webster told reporters in a Tuesday afternoon media availability about conversations he’s had with Dragic and his representatives.

Dragic, who is currently on a personal leave from the team, came over to the Raptors from the Miami Heat in the summer sign-and-trade for Kyle Lowry along with Precious Achiuwa.

The Raptors opted for younger options on the team such as rookie Dalano Banton and Malachi Flynn, while generally running the league’s shortest bench rotation.

One thing is clear: Dragic will be done with the Raptors in the near future. How he gets to a new NBA team isn’t quite as apparent.

“It’s a unique piece,” Webster said about Dragic’s contract. “You get to be in conversations that you typically aren’t.”

Dragic could simply be traded to another team for assets and begin playing there. Last week, it was reported the Raptors could trade Dragic to trigger a potential buyout, offering him the chance to sign with a third team. If no trade materializes, the last likely option would be that the Raptors buy out Dragic’s contract, again giving him a chance to sign elsewhere.

“We’ve always had a pretty good line of communication with Goran and his representative,” Webster said. “Even before he left here, [Raptors president Masai Ujiri] and myself sat down with him and got a sense [of how he was feeling.]”

Webster said that Dragic and his team haven’t been “revealing a ton” about their “ideal” resolution to the situation.

“I think they’ll probably keep those cards close,” Webster added. “But they realize that a fairly large expiring contract… greases some deals in the NBA, which is the name of the game.”

Whatever does happen, it seems like some sort of Dragic transaction is bound to play out in the next week.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

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