2. Toronto Raptors
After dishing out a first-round pick to acquire Jakob Poeltl at the trade deadline, the Raptors now find themselves in a precarious situation. Should Poeltl decide he’d like to leave for greener pastures, Toronto will have the same problem they did just a few months ago, but with one less first-round draft pick to show for it.
When looking at the centers that will be available in this year’s free agency class, Vucevic is the only one who could potentially move the needle for teams looking to make a push. With the Raptors balancing on the edge of retooling to win now and blowing it up for a full-on rebuild, I think they’d like to conserve their remaining draft capital until they can see what this core is capable of achieving.
For that reason, I think the Raptors are prime candidates to make a move for Vucevic, doubly so if Poeltl leaves Toronto in free agency.
Nikola Vucevic would certainly be on the Toronto Raptors’ radar if their current center bolts in free agency.
Ironically, the Bulls themselves could get in on the Poeltl sweepstakes if they decide to move on from Vooch. It’s not like this move would come from out of nowhere, as the Bulls have hinted their interest in Poeltl at the last two trade deadlines, something that I fully advocated for at the time.
In this hypothetical scenario, a sign-and-trade makes a lot of sense for both teams involved here. Since both Poeltl and Vucevic are free agents here, this move would be entirely precipitated by their own willingness to join the other roster, as the Bulls and Raptors have no leverage to force this move. Still, it seems to make quite a bit of sense, especially considering how few starting center jobs are open for the taking in the NBA these days.