Report: Raptors discussed trading Lowry, Valanciunas to Grizzlies for Conley, Gasol


While all eyes are locked on the Anthony Davis drama in New Orleans, another blockbuster trade could be brewing north of the border.

According to Jake Fischer of Sports Illustrated, the Toronto Raptors have discussed a trade with the Grizzlies that would send Kyle Lowry and Jonas Valanciunas to Memphis in exchange for Mike Conley and Marc Gasol.

This would be a massive shakeup for the Raptors, who are looking to capitalize on their best chance to reach the NBA Final before Kawhi Leonard hits the open market this summer. But it appears the talks didn’t go too far.

Mike Conley and Marc Gasol are Grizzlies icons, but they could be on the move ahead of the NBA trade deadline.
Mike Conley and Marc Gasol are Grizzlies icons, but they could be on the move ahead of the NBA trade deadline.

Lowry and Valanciunas are the two longest-tenured members of the Raptors, a designation they took up after DeMar DeRozan was dealt to San Antonio in the summer. Lowry wasn’t pleased about the move at the time, saying he “felt betrayed” over the trade of his best friend.

Lowry was named to his fifth All-Star Game last week despite battling a back injury that has limited his playing time and production. The 32-year-old, who has one year remaining on his deal, is averaging 14.1 points, 4.5 rebounds and a career-best 9.2 assists. He spent the first two seasons of his career with the Grizzlies.

Conley would give the Raptors a much-needed secondary scoring option outside of Leonard, averaging a healthy 20.3 points per game on .435 percent shooting, including .359 percent from deep. But there is a catch. The 31-year-old has two years and $66 million remaining on his contract — that’s a lot of dough for an aging player who has struggled to stay healthy throughout his career.

Gasol would be an upgrade on Valanciunas, but he’s also 34 and has the option to become a free agent this summer.

Valanciunas is on the verge of returning from a thumb injury that has kept him out of the lineup since mid-December.

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