San Antonio Spurs: DeMar DeRozan apologized to for trade ‘miscommunication’
By Rob Wolkenbrod
An upset DeMar DeRozan received a public apology for how his trade to the San Antonio Spurs was handled Wednesday.
DeMar DeRozan became the centerpiece of what the San Antonio Spurs received for Kawhi Leonard, in a trade that shook up the NBA offseason. Danny Green also went to the Toronto Raptors, while Jakob Poeltl and a protected 2019 first-round pick went to the Silver and Black.
Apparently, DeRozan was promised by Toronto at Summer League, that he would not be dealt this offseason. So it led to a not-so-smooth parting of ways in the past 48 hours.
Well, according to ESPN, Raptors executive Masai Ujiri publicly apologized for the lack of communication with DeRozan on the trade, and how it was all handled. Ujiri said he spoke to DeRozan at Summer League, but it was more on what the organization expected from him this season.
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“I had a conversation with DeMar at summer league, and I really want to leave it at that,” Ujiri said Friday. “We spoke … I think maybe my mistake was talking about what we expected going forward from him. So, not necessarily talking about a trade but what I expect from him going forward, and I think that’s where the gap was.”
“In my job, I always have to assume we’re going forward with the team that I have. If there was a miscommunication there, I do apologize to DeMar and his family and his representation. It’s not what I meant.”
DeRozan may have seen Ujiri’s apology and did not appreciate it. He posted a single-emoji response on Instagram that looks, like, a facepalm.
It’s hardly a great way for DeRozan’s nine-year Raptors tenure to end, but the trade is official and there’s nothing else to do except have both parties move on. Toronto has Leonard and Green; San Antonio has DeRozan and Poeltl.
Once training camp starts in September, this should fade into the background and see both sides welcome their players into the fold. Leonard and Green for at least one year in Toronto, and DeRozan and Poeltl for at least two years in San Antonio. How all four players fit into their new situations remains to be seen.
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From 2009-18, DeRozan had five years of 20-plus points per game, finishing with averages of 19.7 points, 4.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. He made four All-Star games, including each of the past three years.