There’s going to be no love lost between former Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan and team president Masai Ujiri moving forward.
Following the trade that sent DeRozan to the San Antonio Spurs as part of a package for Kawhi Leonard, Ujiri himself is talking publicly about the deal for the first time.
To say that he decided to throw DeRozan under the bus would be an understatement.
"We kept giving them chance, and kept giving them chance. We had to do something different." – Masai on the exodus of Dwane Casey and DeMar DeRozan
— Faizal Khamisa (@SNFaizalKhamisa) July 20, 2018
“We kept giving them chance, and kept giving them chance. We had to do something different,” the executive said.
Let’s point out the obvious first. Dwane Casey was fired weeks before earning the NBA’s Coach of the Year award after leading Toronto to a franchise-best 59 regular season wins.
DeRozan himself was a first-round pick of the Raptors back in 2009. The All-Star guard helped turn around a fledgling franchise and saw this team earn a playoff appearance in each of his final five seasons up north.
Teams and fans want loyalty from players. But what happens when teams don’t show loyalty to said players? That’s been a major talking point since DeRozan, who gave his all to the Raptors, was traded earlier this week after nine seasons with the team.
Ujiri could have left well enough alone. There was absolutely no reason for him to throw both Casey and DeRozan under the bus as some sort of underhanded parting shot. It doesn’t show the executive or his organization in the best of lights.