Raptors trade Valanciunas to Grizzlies for Gasol in 4-player deal

Raptors trade Valanciunas to Grizzlies for Gasol in 4-player deal

Raptors trade Valanciunas to Grizzlies for Gasol in 4-player deal

The trade still must be approved by the National Basketball Association.

The Grizzlies have been shopping Gasol and star point guard Mike Conley for a month.

The Toronto Raptors acquired three-time All-Star Marc Gasol from the Memphis Grizzlies prior to this afternoon's National Basketball Association trade deadline.

Now, the Toronto Raptors have made a decision to get in on the fun, swinging for the fences on a move for a former All-Star. The former second-team All-American is averaging 8.0 points, 2.9 asissts, 2.9 rebounds and 20 minutes this season in his third season as an National Basketball Association reserve. Some league insiders thought a trade between the teams would be completed by night's end, and the fact that Gasol's name plate was removed from his locker at FedExForum added fuel to that fire.

Gasol has been with the Grizzlies for 11 seasons, which was tied with Russell Westbrook for the fourth-longest tenure with one franchise among active players.

It was flop-sweats time for Raptors fans and, even if they might not admit, for Ujiri and GM Bobby Webster and everyone else in the Toronto front office.

"Experience does that for you", Valanciunas told reporters in Atlanta on Thursday morning. It seems the trade demands for Memphis make this deal unlikely to happen. In landing him, Toronto went from a team that was being passed as it stood still to striding aggressively back into the Eastern Conference race, otherwise known as the fight to be pantsed by the Golden State Warriors in the Finals. "I love Toronto and I want to stay there".

The Raptors have felt pressure after seeing other teams in the east get better. He's making $8.3 million this season with an $8.7 million player option next year.

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