Masai Ujiri and the Toronto Raptors made a controversial move on Wednesday to trade DeMar DeRozan in a package that brought Kawhi Leonard to Toronto.
At the time of the trade, Ujiri was actually in Africa, so he hadn’t spoken to the media until Friday afternoon. Right away, he made sure to address the first thing that was on top of everyone’s minds and that was DeRozan. He apologized and made clear what their plans are for how the franchise will remember DeRozan.
After that, reporters continued to press Ujiri about whether or not he told DeRozan that he would not be traded in the offseason. Ujiri continued to dance around that specific question but really continued to stress that he feels he has done what is best for the team.
It’s been an emotional time for Raptors fans, but it’s hard to argue with the fact that the Raptors acquired a top-5 player in the league.
A lot of how this trade is remembered will depend on what Kawhi Leonard does this season, so it will be interesting to see what happens as the NBA season approaches. Even if Kawhi doesn’t return in the 2019-2020, if he commits to competing with the Raptors, they could have a real shot at an NBA Championship.