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#pounditSaturday, December 3, 2022

Report: Raptors have made 1 player off limits in trade talks

Masai Ujiri at a press conference

Sep 25, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Toronto Raptors president Masai Ujiri during a press conference at media day at the BioSteel Centre. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Toronto Raptors are seemingly looking to make a big trade this offseason, but there is at least one player they are not willing to part with in any potential blockbuster deal.

Both Kevin Durant and Deandre Ayton have been mentioned as possible trade targets for the Raptors. According to Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer, Toronto is not willing to give up Scottie Barnes for either player.

The Raptors may have to make a difficult decision if they want to go after Durant. Fischer was told by sources that the Brooklyn Nets are not operating with any urgency to trade Durant. If Toronto tries to land Durant and is unable to do so, there would be a risk of Ayton landing with another team in the meantime.

Barnes is the reigning NBA Rookie of the Year. The 20-year-old averaged 15.3 points, 7.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game in his first NBA season. You can understand why the Raptors want to keep him, but their reported unwillingness to include him in any trade could merely be posturing.

Durant had high praise for Barnes in a recent viral video that got Raptors fans excited about the prospect of their team landing K.D. If Durant does wind up in Toronto, he would probably prefer if Barnes is there to play alongside him.

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