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Report: “Almost certain” Raptors will trade Goran Dragic before deadline

Dallas Mavericks v Toronto Raptors

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 23: Goran Dragic #1 of the Toronto Raptors warms up prior to their NBA game against the Dallas Mavericks at Scotiabank Arena on October 23, 2021 in Toronto, Canada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images)

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Goran Dragic has been away from the Raptors since Nov. 13, officially dealing with a “personal matter,” while Toronto’s front office has looked for a trade for the veteran point guard. Dragic had said he didn’t want to play with a young Toronto team (then apologized for his statement).

That trade will come before the deadline, reports Doug Smith of the Toronto Sun.

“According to multiple NBA sources, granted anonymity because nothing has been finalized, the Raptors are finding great interest in a myriad of differently structured deals for the veteran point guard and he is almost certain to be dealt near the Feb. 10 NBA trade deadline...

“No names were clear in conversations with sources here on the weekend but it is clear that, 10 days out from the deadline, general manager Bobby Webster and president/vice-chairman Masai Ujiri are being proactive in seeking deals.”

Dragic makes $19.4 million this season, the final year of his contract. The Raptors are $2.8 million above the luxury tax line and would like to get below that number. They also will be an above the cap team this offseason that cannot make any big free agent signings. Toronto may want to trade for a player who makes a few million less per season but is under contract for another year or two, someone who can help them on the court. The team that trades for Dragic would likely buy him out.

It has long been expected that if he becomes a free agent, Dragic would sign with Dallas to back up Luka Doncic.

There are a lot of questions about who and where, but expect Dragic to get traded before the Feb. 10 deadline.