NBA Rumors: Raps Interested in Kirilenko, Ilyasova; Looking to Deal Calderon
It's been a busy offseason so far for GM Bryan Colangelo, assistants Ed Stefanski and Maurizio Gheredini and the entire Raptors staff. But guess what? The offseason has just started.
Amidst swirling rumors about Steve Nash landing in Toronto via free agency, the Raptors have also come to an agreement with Landry Fields on a three-year, $20 million dollar deal. This signing, along with the Jeremy Lin potential offer sheet from the Houston Rockets on Wednesday, will virtually eliminate the Knicks from the Nash sweepstakes.
Landry comes to Toronto as a solid defender, rebounder and passer. In his rookie season, he was a competent shooter, but in his sophomore season, he struggled as a shooter, only shooting 25.6 percent from three and 56.2 percent from the free-throw line.
What he brings to the table if his shot is on in a game is very comparable to former Raptor Anthony Parker. Parker, now retired, was a clutch shooter, solid defender and an even more solid veteran on the Atlantic Division champion Raptor squad from 2006-07. His game severely regressed as he got older. Landry's career, on the other hand, is just getting started.
You think were finished at Fields? Think again, Raptor fans.
Both players would provide Toronto with something it needs. Either a stopper at the small forward position (Kirilenko) or a smooth shooter forward (Ilyasova) is what the Raptors are targeting.
ESPN's Ric Bucher has also reported the Raptors are among the teams interested in aging small forward Grant Hill. Hill underwent a platelet enrichment knee procedure, same as Kobe Bryant has done this offseason, and he appears to be ready to give it another go this season.
It will be a long shot if the Raptors land him, I expect Hill to be an option D if they don't land any of their targeted free agents or players acquired via trade.
Flynn endured a tough sophomore season, starting with getting dealt by the Minnesota Timberwolves to the Houston Rockets at the 2011 draft. Having not fit in well in Houston, he was shipped out by the Rockets to Portland in March.
He played behind Ray Felton and Nolan Smith in Portland, but by the end of the season, Flynn, given playing time, shined. Flynn averaged 10.7 points and 7.3 assists when given the opportunity to play 20 minutes or more in four games for the Blazers, including 18 points and 11 assists in Portland's last game of the season.
Lastly, the Raptors are trying to deal Jose Calderon. Instead of amnestying the expiring point guard, the Raptors are looking to deal him any team that wants him. There are plenty of teams interested, one of whom are the San Antonio Spurs.
Calderon would fit in nicely in a Gregg Popovich system, but other teams are expected to show interest. Among them may be the Los Angeles Lakers, the Chicago Bulls who are looking for a quick fix to help alleviate the loss of start point guard Derrick Rose and the Miami Heat will obviously show interest due to his pass-first mentality and his connection to former Raptor great Chris Bosh.
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