The Toronto Raptors have been pegged as a team to watch during the lead-up to the NBA trade deadline, as both Kyle Lowry and Norman Powell’s names keep popping up as ones to watch. With just over two hours before the 3 p.m. EST deadline, the first of those dominos have fallen.
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, Powell is the first big name to get moved. Powell is on his way to Portland, while the Trail Blazers are sending promising young wing Gary Trent Jr. and veteran swingman Rodney Hood to the Raptors.
Toronto has traded Norm Powell to Portland for Gary Trent and Rodney Hood, sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 25, 2021
Powell, who is an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season, is in the midst of a career-best year, as he’s averaging 19.6 points per game while connecting on 43.9 percent of his attempts from three. He should fit snugly as a high-scoring third option alongside Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum, and while his scoring is his calling card, he competes on the defensive end of the floor, something Portland will need with Trent leaving town.
As for the Raptors, Hood has a team option after this season, while Trent is the headliner of the deal. He’s also out of contract at the end of this year, but he will be a restricted free agent. Trent exploded onto the scene for Portland in the NBA’s Orlando Bubble, and this year, he’s averaging 15 points per game and hitting 39.7 percent of his threes.