The first shoe has fallen for the Toronto Raptors on deadline day, as ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting the team is trading Norman Powell to the Portland Trail Blazers, acquiring Gary Trent Jr. and Rodney Hood in return.
Toronto has traded Norm Powell to Portland for Gary Trent and Rodney Hood, sources tell ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 25, 2021
Powell was very publicly in trade talks over the last two weeks, as the Raptors spiralled to the brink of playoff contention with a nine-game losing streak. Multiple sources reported yesterday that the number of teams interested in Norm — averaging a career-high 43 percent from three and showcasing his ability to score during Toronto’s stretch without Fred VanVleet, OG Anunoby, and Pascal Siakam — was “in the teens.”
So, off he goes — and the haul isn’t bad. Gary Trent Jr., just 22-years-old, is a fun basketball player, and was one of the centrepieces of a feisty Blazers squad that earned their way into the bubble playoffs through the play in round. Now in his third season with Portland, Trent is averaging 15.0 points in 30.8 minutes per game, shooting 39.7 percent from three on 7.4 attempts per game. Obviously, he will slot nicely into Powell’s spot in the starting lineup, as the two enjoy much the same skillset. Contract-wise, Trent is on an expiring rookie deal, where the Raptors would have his bird rights in restricted free agency.
Rodney Hood, meanwhile, arrives on a non-guaranteed deal according to Sportsnet’s Michael Grange and is eligible to be put on waivers by Toronto.
Can confirm Powell Portland. Rodney Hood’s deal is non-guaranteed for next year; waivable. Gary Trent jr. is on rookie deal.— Michael Grange (@michaelgrange) March 25, 2021
Hood, 28, has been in the rotation for Portland since returning from an Achilles injury in the off-season. He hasn’t quite been the same player in 2020-21 as he was pre-injury, but has soaked up minutes playing 19.1 per game, while averaging 4.7 points. The trouble spot has been his three-point shooting — after averaging 49.3 percent in 21 games last season before the injury, he’s shooting just 29.8 percent during this campaign.
More to come on this deal in what’s becoming a frantic few hours before the deadline at 3 p.m.