Whether the Toronto Raptors emerge as buyers, sellers, or inactive ahead of the March 25 trade deadline, Norman Powell remains a constant subject of interest.
Powell continues to be an attractive trade target with a $10.865 million base salary and $11.6 million 2021 player option that he will almost certainly decline, as he's widely expected to find a more lucrative deal on the open market.
ESPN's Zach Lowe stated that several teams are swirling around the 27-year-old shooting guard.
"It might take me more hands than I have to count how many teams have inquired about Norm Powell with them," Lowe said on his podcast, The Lowe Post.
Widespread interest in Powell doesn't necessarily connote an intention for the Raptors to trade him, but he's playing some of the best basketball of his career, averaging 28 points per game through his last six contests and could wield a decent return for a Raptors team that has yet to fully indicate what their long-term trajectory is after 2021.
Toronto is building its future core around Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet and OG Anunoby, all of whom have signed long-term extensions with the organization. Powell has risen with the aforementioned trio and the Raptors will be forced into determining whether he's imperative to the future of the team, they should let him walk into free agency at the height of his value without getting anyone in return, or he should be traded at the deadline.
There's still nine days until the deadline and Lowe didn't list any of the potential suitors, but one would have to imagine that Powell holds more value to a team that has genuine championship aspirations, either as a rental or with confidence he could re-sign for the chance to contend for another ring.
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