No. 7: Toronto Raptors
With Fred VanVleet opting out, it seems like the Toronto Raptors could use a reset. But what if they went in the opposite direction, instead choosing to make a splash and add Bradley Beal?
This could be a questionable trade for both teams, but the idea is there. The Toronto Raptors would upgrade their primary guard, going from Fred VanVleet to Beal in an attempt to become a perennial playoff team.
Pairing Beal with Pascal Siakam, Scottie Barnes, and OG Anunoby would also give Beal the best defensive team he’s ever played with, allowing him to focus most of his efforts on the offensive end.
The biggest potential roadblock would be VanVleet, however, as the Raptors and Wizards would have to conduct a sign-and-trade, as the point guard just opted out of his player option.
As for Washington, would they want to make this sort of deal with VanVleet as the centerpiece? He’d be a decent replacement, but it might be an overpay, depending on the contract.
Chris Boucher would be a solid rotation piece, and the Wizards could take a flyer on Malachi Flynn, but the prize in this trade would be the 13th pick in the 2023 NBA Draft, as the Wizards would add a second lottery selection.
Potential starting lineups
Raptors: Bradley Beal, OG Anunoby, Scottie Barnes, Pascal Siakam, Jakob Poeltl (if re-signed)
Wizards: Fred VanVleet, Delon Wright, Corey Kispert, Deni Avdija, Kristaps Porzingis