The New Orleans Pelicans could acquire a couple of sneaky pick-ups by helping the Toronto Raptors kickstart their rebuild
The New Orleans Pelicans and Toronto Raptors are two teams who appear to be in the same boat on paper. Both squads are floundering for a low playoff spot, with the Pelicans sitting at 11-14, and the Raptors one win better at 12-14.
Looking beyond the record, the Pelicans and Raptors are two franchises going in dramatically different directions. The Pelicans, are building with a foundation of young players who look poised to run the NBA for the next decade. On the other hand, the Raptors are a team falling from championship glory with a decaying roster.
It’s time for the Pelicans to buy and make a run at their first playoff appearance in the Brandon Ingram-Zion Williamson era, and it’s time for the Raptors to sell and rebuild themselves back into a championship contender. These teams are perfect trade partners, and here are some deals worth considering.
Trade #1 – J.J. Redick and a First-Round Pick for Norman Powell
Our first move is a deal for Norman Powell, who’s become one of the NBA’s most underrated shooting guards in recent years. At 27-years old, Powell is hitting his prime right now, and on a team-friendly deal. A solid defender and 40 percent 3 point shooter in recent seasons, he could be a wise target for the Pelicans if they whiff on stars like Bradley Beal or Zach LaVine.
So why not approach a deal like this?
2022 Unprotected 1st Round Pick
This move would give the Raptors an expiring contract to open up cap space in a big offseason, while also providing the Raptors with a valuable first-round pick that can be used in several ways.
The Raptors might counter and either request a package surrounding Lonzo Ball or additional draft compensation. I’d be wary of that considering Ball’s play of late and Powell’s status compared to the NBA’s other top shooting guards. If that’s the case, here’s a bargain deal to consider.