NBA rumors: Raptors acquired Marc Gasol with DeMarcus Cousins in mind

NBA rumors: Raptors acquired Marc Gasol with DeMarcus Cousins in mind

The Toronto Raptors saw what likely would be waiting for them should they make it to the NBA Finals, so they made a move in order to be better equipped for a battle with the Warriors. 

On Feb. 7, the Raptors completed a deal to acquire All-Star center Marc Gasol from the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for Jonas Valanciunas, Delon Wright, C.J. Miles and a 2024 second-round draft pick.

Gasol, 34, was having a down year by his standards, but the Raptors wanted more veteran experience for the big games ahead, and they reportedly had one matchup in mind when they had Gasol shipped up North: DeMarcus Cousins. 

Via The Undefeated's Marc Spears:

The Raptors won both regular-season games against the Warriors this season. While Cousins didn’t play in either game, part of the reason that the Raptors acquired Marc Gasol at the trade deadline was in hopes of a potential Finals matchup with Cousins, a source told The Undefeated.

Cousins tore his quadriceps muscle early in Game 2 of the Warriors' first-round NBA playoff series against the Los Angeles Clippers and has not played since.

But after six weeks of rehab, head coach Steve Kerr announced Thursday that Cousins will be active for Game 1 of the NBA Finals against Gasol and the Raptors at Scotiabank Arena.

[RELATED: Dubs enter Finals in search of championship 'D']

While Cousins will see limited minutes and come off the bench, the Raptors have a big body in Gasol who can match up with him and stop him from punishing Toronto on the interior.

This, of course, could alter Raptors coach Nick Nurse's rotations if he is set on having Gasol bang with Boogie in the paint.

Let the chess match begin.

How to watch "Race and Sports in America: Conversations" online, on TV

How to watch "Race and Sports in America: Conversations" online, on TV

There's a movement taking place in this country right now.

The voices of Black athletes are being heard loud and clear. They want change, and they want it now.

Athletes like Warriors superstar Steph Curry are using their platforms to push for racial and social equality. But it all starts with tough conversations. The message needs to be heard.

On Monday, Curry will take part in a wide-range discussion on an NBC Sports' special, "Race and Sports in America: Conversations."

In addition to Curry, the conversation will feature Basketball Hall of Famer Charles Barkley, World Series champion and Oakland native Jimmy Rollins, Baseball Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith, Los Angeles Chargers coach Anthony Lynn, Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph, former tennis star James Blake and golfer Troy Mullins.

“We have to continue to double down and keep people accountable in all walks of life, all industries, all forms of leadership, the judicial system," Curry said. "And hopefully for my kids’ generation, their kids, we will see change.”

Here's how to watch "Race in America and Sports: Conversations."

When: Monday, July 13, 2020 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT
TV: NBC Sports Bay Area
Stream: NBCSports.com

[RACE AND SPORTS IN AMERICA: Listen to the latest episode]

Warriors' Steve Kerr shares nickname for proposed second NBA 'bubble'

Warriors' Steve Kerr shares nickname for proposed second NBA 'bubble'

The Warriors might end up going to Chicago in September, as the NBA is exploring a second "bubble" for the eight teams who are not a part of the resumed season in Orlando.

Golden State coach Steve Kerr has a nickname for the proposed event.

"I call it the 'JV Bubble,' " Kerr said on the most recent episode of his "Flying Coach" podcast.

You probably are aware that "JV" is short for "junior varsity."

[RUNNIN' PLAYS PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

So what are the Warriors doing in the meantime?

"Right now we have our young players coming in -- working out individually," Kerr explained. "One player, one coach at our facility in San Francisco.

"No team activities are allowed at this point."

[RELATED: Kerr shares Warriors' mindset on playing in Chicago 'bubble']

If the Warriors end up participating in the "JV Bubble," it's all but certain that players like Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Andrew Wiggins will not attend.

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