The Jazz Are Trading Kelly Olynyk And Ochai Agbaji To The Raptors For A First Round Pick

As the NBA trade deadline approached, a player many expected to be moved was Jazz backup center Kelly Olynyk. The floor-spacing big man was coveted on a market that lacked star power but had plenty of interest from contending teams in adding quality depth.

The expectation was that a contender like the Sixers would come in and look to add Olynyk, but the Jazz were able to find themselves a rather surprising trade that netted them a first round pick from the Toronto Raptors. Per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Jazz will send Olynyk and Ochai Agbaji to the Raptors for Kira Lewis, Otto Porter Jr., and a 2024 first round pick (the least favorable of four teams).

It’s a bit surprising to see Toronto part with a first round pick at the deadline as they were expected to be sellers, not buyers. Olynyk is Canadian, so it’s their second trade to bring a homegrown talent back north of the border (alongside RJ Barrett), but it also indicates that they have high hopes for Agbaji as a floor-spacer in their rebuild around Scottie Barnes.

Olynyk is averaging 8.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 4.4 assists per game on 56.2/42.9/84.2 shooting splits this season for the Jazz, while Agbaji is averaging 5.4 points and 2.5 rebounds per game on 42.6/33.1/75.0 splits this season. On the other side, Porter Jr. was another player that had been named in rumors as a target of teams seeking wing depth, and he’ll join the Jazz alongside Lewis, who was already moved once this season from New Orleans to Toronto and only played in one game for the Raptors.

It’s a fascinating trade, with Utah acquiring more draft capital while Toronto adds some veteran talent and a young prospect. Considering their own draft pick this year is only top-6 protected as part of the Jakob Poeltl trade with the Spurs, it is particularly surprising to see the Raptors part ways with a pick in what is seemingly an effort to get better right now.