Toronto Raptors form reunion after trading for Spurs' Jakob Poeltl

Nickeem Khan
FiredUp Network Sports Writer


Thursday, February 9, 2023

Fresh off playing against the Toronto Raptors, Jakob Poeltl has been traded from the San Antonio Spurs to the team that originally drafted him. There have been constant rumours circulating around the suspected reunion of the two parties. With only hours remaining before the cutoff time of the trade deadline, the Raptors finally acquired the center they have been looking for so dearly.

The details of the trade consist of the San Antonio Spurs sending Jakob Poeltl in exchange for Khem Birch, a 2024 first-round pick (protections yet to be specified) and two future second-round picks, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. Considering that it was heavily reported that Gary Trent Jr. would be at the forefront of the trade, for Toronto to get this done without giving up anyone from the core was a great move by Masai Ujiri and Bobby Webster.

Toronto is very familiar with Poeltl, as he was originally a member of the team before he was a part of the deal for Kawhi Leonard in 2018, which subsequently resulted in a championship. The former Utah Ute returns to the Raptors with averages of 12.1 points, 9.0 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game.

This marks the second year in a row that these two teams have made a deadline deal together—last year involving Goran Dragic for Thaddeus Young. Toronto has been the team with the most eyes, specifically due to the availability of all their core players.

Poeltl who will no doubt be a great fit with this team is in the last year of his contract. He joins Fred VanVleet and Gary Trent Jr. as players looking for a payday in the offseason. It's clear Toronto pulled the trigger on this deal with the intention of retaining him long-term. However, it won't be possible to keep all three. 

There still remain hours on the clock and more potential moves for the Toronto Raptors to make. 

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