So long, Carlos and Roko
|Amir Johnson was a 2nd round pick by the Pistons in 2005.|
Just when you thought it was safe to think the Raptors were done, they’re not.
They are on the verge of finalizing a two-for-two deal with Milwaukee that sends swingman Carlos Delfino and point guard Roko Ukic to the Bucks.
It's unclear when the deal will be official but it could be done as early as today or tomorrow.
The financial aspect of the deal will be felt at the end of next season.
If the deal is two-for-two and Weems is not waived, it will fill out Toronto's 15-man roster and spell the end of player movement unless Colagnelo has one more deal up his sleeve.
The Raptors would go into the season with Jose Calderon, Jarrett Jack, Quincy Douby, DeMar DeRozan, Marco Belinelli, Antoine Wright, Marcus Banks, Hedo Turkoglu, Chris Bosh, Andrea Bargnani, Reggie Evans, Rasho Nesterovic, Patrick O'Bryant, Johnson and Weems.
Johnson has just one year and $3,666,667 left on his contract while Ukic had an option for $1,450,000 in the 2010-11 season. Weems is due to make $736,420 this year with none of his 2010-11 salary ($854,389) guranteed.
And with the expectations that the salary cap and luxury tax thresholds will drop next season, any long-term savings will help keep some kind of financial flexibility for president and general manager Bryan Colangelo.
But giving up on Ukic is a gamble, even for a Toronto team with a surfeit of point guards.
The 24-year-old struggled at times in his rookie season but at 6-foot-5 and with the ability to break down defences, his skillset could see him eventually thrive in the NBA.
|STEVE RUSSELL/TORONTO STAR|
|Roki Ukic and all his potential are off to Milwaukee.|
However, with Jose Calderon and the recently-acquired Jarrett Jack cemented as the top two point guards on the roster and Quincy Douby seemingly able to handle third string duties if necessary, Ukic did become expendable.
Delfino spent last season with Khimki in the Russian league after a year with Toronto and three with the Detroit Pistons.
The Raptors originally had major interest in bringing him back but the acquisition of free agent Hedo Turkoglu, the drafting of DeMar DeRozan, the acquisition of Marco Belinelli and the arrival of Jack made Delfino redundant.
Johnson? Well, he’s big, 6-9 and 210 pounds; raw and really hasn’t done much in the four years he’s kicked around the league. But with some playing time available on a front court rotation that will be dominated by Chris Bosh, Andrea Bargnani, Rasho Nesterovic and Reggie Evans, he might get a chance to contribute – or at least push Patrick O’Bryant for those five-big minutes.
What else does it mean?
Well, with the roster looking full,it's a virtual certainty that Toronto will let Pops Mensah-Bonsu find alternate employment.