On Wednesday, Mar. 24, the Toronto Raptors snapped a nine-game losing streak with a 135-111 win over the Denver Nuggets. Exiting through the tunnel after the game, star point guard Kyle Lowry threw up the double peace signs — seemingly marking an end to his illustrious Raptors career.
Before yesterday’s Mar. 25 NBA trade deadline, everyone around the league believed Lowry would be traded away from Toronto — even the veteran point guard himself.
Kyle Lowry exiting tonight's game. pic.twitter.com/zKJB5cIrrY
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) March 25, 2021
But, when the 3 p.m. E.T. deadline passed on Thursday afternoon, the NBA world was shocked to see Lowry’s name still on the Raptors roster.
Multiple reports pegged the Philadelphia 76ers as a top landing spot for the six-time All Star. According to Sam Amick of The Athletic, the Raptors believed they were close t0 locking in a deal with the Philly franchise before draft compensation disputes collapsed the agreement.
“As for Philadelphia, which was reportedly close to a Lowry deal but wound up opting for Oklahoma City’s George Hill instead, a source with knowledge of the talks said the Raptors indeed believed they were very close on that front late in the process and that the draft compensation was the final unresolved hurdle,” Amick wrote. “The plan, the source said, was for Toronto to re-route Sixers guard Danny Green to a third team.”
Instead of heading back to his hometown of Philadelphia and joining the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference, Lowry will return to the place that he’s called home for the past nine seasons.
As the consensus greatest Toronto Raptor of all time, Lowry will be welcomed home with open arms as he attempts to get his 18-26 franchise back on track.