As the NBA Trade Deadline fast approaches, it feels like the Toronto Raptors are adrift in no man’s land.
Currently hovering on the cutline of the playoffs, the team seems to be at a crossroads. While it wouldn’t feel right to blow this group up, is the team really contending for a championship? Or is it beginning to enter into the realm of mediocrity?
Let’s get one thing straight. If this team squeaks into the playoffs and matches up with Philadelphia, Milwaukee, or potentially even Brooklyn, I wouldn’t bet against them. The Raptors have posted marquee wins this season over all three of those teams. It’s the little things that are relegating this team to bubble status right now. The Raptors are dead last in rebounds per game, and 24th in field goal percentage. These are not sustainable numbers. Something’s gotta give.
Fortunately, the Raptors play in a league with 29 other teams going through the same trials and tribs. Here are five options for the team to look into before March 25, ranked on a scale of practical to explosive.
Toronto Raptors trade deadline target: Khem Birch would solidify depth
Alright, this one is a little sentimental, but Orlando C Khem Birch would still make an excellent addition to the Raptors’ depth.
At that point in his career, Birch was just trying to find his footing in the league. Now, he’s developed into one of the Magic’s most trusted contributors.
Averaging career highs in almost every category this season, Birch could fit in coming off the bench for fellow Canadian Chris Boucher.
Given that he’s set to hit free agency next year, the Magic are motivated to move him now. Send them some cash and maybe a prospect, and get some verbal agreement from Birch that he’d be interested in resigning. He could provide the perfect hard-nosed depth piece to give the Raptors a little more muscle on the glass.