The point guard carousel is gathering speed ahead of Thursday's trade deadline with the latest report suggesting that the Toronto Raptors are attempting to acquire star point guard Rajon Rondo.
Ryan Wolstat of the Toronto Sun suggests that general manager Masai Ujiri is exploring "complicated deals" in attempts to acquire the four-time All Star, one likely requiring multiple teams, players, and picks.
In his column published late Monday, Wolstat wrote:
It’s no secret Boston has dangled four-time all-star Rajon Rondo league-wide and while the asking price is steep, he has piqued the interest of Toronto’s front office, according to multiple sources. Toronto is eager to up its “star” quotient and is also enamored with Rondo’s resume, particularly his four all-defensive team selections (two all-NBA first team). He has many backers in the organization.
There has been speculation since the season's outset that the Raptors would trade their emergent, soon-to-be free agent point guard Kyle Lowry. But, as the team kept winning -- currently third in the Eastern Conference -- management has been almost coerced into keeping their floor general. With the team appearing primed to make the playoffs for the first time in six seasons, selling Lowry would be impossible to explain to a starving fan base.
Now, initially sellers, the Raptors, ironically, could become buyers at the point guard position - which will certainly appease the New York Knicks. They have been in pursuit of Lowry for months and even had a deal in place to acquire the 27-year-old in December before their owner, James Dolan, canceled the deal at the last moment.
Since then, Lowry has played the best basketball of his career. He's averaging 16.7 points, and 7.6 assists per game - both career highs.
In coveting Lowry, the Raptors may be able to acquire the necessary means to land Rondo - reportedly two first-round picks. That being said, Rondo's desire to explore free agency two summers from now had reportedly negated a proposed mega-deal with the Sacramento Kings last month. Should he remain fixated on that luxury, a potential deal with Toronto would appear less likely.
Atlanta Hawks point guard Jeff Teague has also been linked to the Knicks and Raptors.