As the start of training camps and the NBA preseason draws near, the Damian Lillard sweepstakes seems to be heating up, with the Portland Trail Blazers getting closer to finding a trade suitor for the superstar guard.
Although it has seemed as though it would only be a matter of time before Lillard would be traded to the Miami Heat, which is the perennial All-Star’s desired destination, the Blazers seem more inclined to trade him elsewhere.
A recent report surfaced that the Blazers aren’t even communicating with the Heat on a Lillard trade; even though Miami wants to get a deal done and is willing to do anything to get it done, Portland appears to be leaning in another direction for one reason or another.
According to ESPN’s Marc J. Spears, the Toronto Raptors have emerged as the new favorite to land Lillard in a blockbuster trade, via NBACentral.
Two ‘really high ranking’ team executives believes the Toronto Raptors are the ‘frontrunners’ for Damian Lillard, per @MarcJSpears
“They wouldn’t be surprised if he ended up in the 6ix” pic.twitter.com/MMxAeeGRw4
— NBACentral (@TheDunkCentral) September 25, 2023
Over the summer, the Raptors were rumored to be looking into trading star forward Pascal Siakam, which could be what Toronto is considering with this potential deal with the Blazers.
If Siakam is on the table in these trade talks, it’s not surprising that the Blazers front office isn’t returning calls from the Heat, as Miami can’t compete with a trade package that will bring an All-Star back to Portland in exchange for Lillard.
It’ll be interesting to see what the Raptors are offering in this deal and if the deal involves Siakam or Scottie Barnes, who would also be an intriguing trade candidate if a deal were to go down between these two teams.NEXT: Video Shows Old Celtics Big 3 Reunited For Marcus Smart's Wedding