Let the San Antonio Spurs' trade rumor season officially begin.
According to former New York Times and ESPN columnist Marc Stein, the Toronto Raptors are "said to have interest in reacquiring Jakob Poeltl from San Antonio." As he reported in his Substack article (subscription required) on Friday, Toronto's late resurgence has them back in the mix in the Eastern Conference and they've been trying to upgrade the center position for a long time now.
Currently, the Raptors are $300,000 below the luxury tax, so they'd probably be looking to offload some salary in any kind of deal.
Poeltl has significantly improved since his first two years with the Toronto Raptors and has become one of the best defending centers in the NBA. As of Friday, he's averaging 1.4 blocks per game after averaging a career-best 1.8 last season. He's also first in the league in contested shots (13.5) and second in screen assist points (12.9)
Would the San Antonio Spurs Trade Jakob Poeltl?
So far, this is the extent of the rumor about Poeltl, and nothing has been written about the Spurs' side. I wouldn't expect much to be revealed from their camp any time soon because, I mean, it is the Spurs.
My early thoughts on the rumor are that this makes a lot of sense from the Raptors point of view, as they have needed someone exactly like Jakob for a couple of years now. If I'm San Antonio, I'm not really eager to move one of the most consistent players on the team unless a deal blows me away.
An offer from Toronto likely wouldn't include someone the Spurs would be interested in like Precious Achiuwa or OG Anunoby, so until we know more about who they might have available, I wouldn't take this report to mean much.
Still, at 15-26, the San Antonio Spurs should keep their phones open for just about everyone if they think they can speed up their rebuild with a move.