Masai Ujiri Rumors
Even with this selection, there are no guarantees DeRozan, the longest-serving Raptor after having been drafted ninth overall in 2009 by Bryan Colangelo, is back with the team next season. Masai Ujiri fired Dwane Casey and is not expected to limit his shakeup to only one move. Of course there’s a better chance DeRozan does return, but Toronto will explore all options, per multiple league sources.
Kristian Winfield: Masai Ujiri on Raptors coaching search: “It’s a tough place because you have to find that balance. But you can’t always think of the team now, you also have to think of the future.. You have think of the vision as a whole.”
Kristian Winfield: Ujiri on what 2nd round sweep identified about the Raptors: “It really shows how hard it is to win in the NBA. … These players have to continue to grow and develop. What’s their ceiling? How can DeMar DeRozan make that next jump? … This is the challenge.”
Word is that the Raptors quietly explored their DeMar DeRozan trade options last summer — before they had any inkling that a breakout season was looming — and I’d fully expect Toronto to explore those possibilities again. Not just with DeRozan but with anyone and everyone on the roster. The Raptors, under the stewardship of the team president Masai Ujiri, typically move in a measured fashion. You have to think this summer will be different.
After the dismissal of highly successful coach Dwane Casey, Toronto is selling the returning core of a 59-win Eastern Conference No. 1 seed, a past NBA Executive of the Year in Masai Ujiri and a streamlined ownership group with immense resources and a willingness to spend. Milwaukee is selling a transcendent young star in Giannis Antetokounmpo, a solid supporting cast and the opening of a new downtown arena next season.