In what may be the biggest trade of Thursday’s deadline, Marc Gasol of the Memphis Grizzlies was traded to the Toronto Raptors for Jonas Valanciunas, Delon Wright, CJ Miles and a 2024 second round pick. This move solidifies Toronto’s status as one of the major teams in the Eastern Conference.
Adrian Wojnarowski broke the news Thursday afternoon.
Toronto is planning to send Jonas Valanciunas, Delon Wright, CJ Milles and a 2024 second-round pick to the the Grizzlies for Gasol, league sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 7, 2019
Report: Toronto Raptors Acquire Marc Gasol From Memphis Grizzlies
The Main Attraction
Gasol has spent his entire ten-year career with the Grizzlies. In those ten years, he’s turned in quite the resume. Gasol has averaged 15.2 points, 7.7 rebounds and has shot 48 percent from the field as a member of the Grizzlies. He has made the All-Star team three times and was the Defensive Player of the Year in 2013. Gasol joins an already good defensive team in Toronto. His two-way playing ability will help lengthen the Raptors lineup. He’s also another three-point threat opposing teams have to worry about. Gasol is an immense upgrade over Valanciunas. In the playoffs, Gasol has elevated his game. He averaged 17.2 points in six trips. He also averaged 39 percent from three-point range and 45 percent from the field.
Moving Down to Memphis
Valanciunas is the main piece coming back to Memphis in this trade. The European center has spent his entire six-year career coming out of Toronto. Valanciunas was the fifth overall pick in 2011. Although he’s never reached the superstar status that the Raptors had hoped, Valanciunas has been a good player in Toronto for most of his tenure there. In his six years in Toronto, he’s averaged 12.8 points, 8.4 rebounds and shot 56 percent in the field. Valanciunas never shied away from the big moment either. In five seasons of playoff basketball, he averaged a double-double twice. In four of those seasons, he averaged nine rebounds or more. Valanciunas is still a young player and has room for growth in his future seasons as an NBA player.
Wright is a valuable piece to have off the bench. His size helps him and gives him a defensive edge over a lot of guards in the league. Offensively he doesn’t offer much, but he is capable of providing ample points off the bench.
Miles is a veteran in every aspect and looks to help these younger players in Memphis. The 13-year veteran will be playing on his fifth team. Miles has averaged 9.6 points and is shooting 41 percent from the field his career.