[Full interview] Raptors GM apologizes to DeRozan
Toronto Raptors general manger Masai Ujiri apologizes for “miscommunication” to DeMar DeRozan.
After Toronto’s most loyal star, guard DeMar DeRozan, was traded for superstar forward Kawhi Leonard, DeRozan was blindsided by the move. President and general manager Masai Ujiri said Friday he was sorry for any “miscommunication” on his part that would lead DeRozan to think he would not be traded.
According to reports, the 28-year-old guard met with Raptor officials at Summer League in Las Vegas and was under the impression that he would not be traded. The long-time Raptor expressed his frustrations about the league via Instagram.
“Can’t trust em,” DeRozan said in an Instagram post. “Ain’t no loyalty in this game. Sell you out quick for a little bit of nothing.”
After Ujiri’s press conference, the new San Antonio Spur went to Instagram to post an emoji of a face palm, expressing his dissatisfaction. In hindsight, the general manger said he “should of handled it better” when came to discussing DeRozan’s future with the team.
The Raptors president noted also that a change need to happen for a different result. The Raptors have never made an NBA Finals appearance and know the DeRozan and Kyle Lowry story all to well. Toronto has lost three straight playoff series to LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. So, acquiring Leonard was the change that the team president deemed necessary.
“I had to react at this time with this deal on the table,” Ujiri said.
The general manger went on to say that must sell Toronto to Leonard, seeing as he has only one year left on his current contract, making him an unrestricted free agent after the 2018-2019 season.
“I think there’s a lot to sell here,” Ujiri said about the city. “Our team, our culture, our city, our ownership. We have everything here except a championship, in my humble opinion.”
Leonard showed up to The North and even smiled for a picture.
Welcome to the North pic.twitter.com/FWy6huVI9l
— Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) July 20, 2018
Video Courtesy: ESPN