The Suns and Heat were quick landing spots to emerge amid Kevin Durant trade rumors but a dark horse team keeps popping up in a big way.
Though we’re still in the thralls of the early stages of NBA free agency, the one story that remains at the forefront is Kevin Durant‘s trade request and potential suitors to make a deal with the Brooklyn Nets.
As soon as reports of the trade request came to light, the two teams that emerged as the most likely landing spots were the Phoenix Suns and Miami Heat, coincidentally the top seeds in each conference for this past year’s postseason. Since then, however, teams such as the Boston Celtics, Philadelphia 76ers, Los Angeles Lakers and even a reunion with the Golden State Warriors — all to varying degrees of realism — have been floated.
Yet, one dark horse team started to emerge not long ago and the steam doesn’t seem to be going anywhere: the Toronto Raptors.
Kevin Durant trade rumors: Raptors remain dark horse to land KD
As pointed out on Reddit, the oddsmakers have moved the odds dramatically for the Raptors to be the team that lands Durant. Whereas they opened at +6000 odds as the 2022-23 destination for Durant after his trade request was reported, they are now down to +235 in some markets and around +550 in others.
With reports that Durant could be open to a trade to Toronto, it’s becoming increasingly clear that Toronto is a dark horse destination for the superstar that fans and analysts must seriously entertain.
Masai Ujiri, the president of basketball operations for the Raptors, has pulled off a trade for a superstar before. Though they weren’t an obvious destination to begin with, he brought Kawhi Leonard to Toronto and reaped the rewards with a title for his troubles.
Could he and the Raptors pull off a similar move, this time with a long-term contract in place to keep the star around, with Durant? Only time will tell, but it definitely appears that Toronto might be going from “dark horse” to one of the favorites in terms of landing spots.