Compton alum and 10-year NBA pro DeMar DeRozan received shocking news early Wednesday morning as he was traded from the Raptors to the Spurs as part of a blockbuster trade for Kawhi Leonard.
DeRozan is known for being a loyal guy. He never transferred out of Compton High, his neighborhood school, he went to USC for college, and he’s been in Toronto for his entire 10-year career, which includes four All-Star appearances. In 2016 he gave Toronto a drama-free re-signing, a rarity in today’s NBA, inking a five-year deal for $139 million.
It was no surprise that DeRozan was apparently upset by the news, as he posted on his Instagram story: “Told one thing and the outcome another. Can’t trust em. Ain’t no loyalty in this game. Sell you out quick for a little bit of nothing…”
DeRozan was traded to the Spurs along with Jakob Poeltl and a protected 2019 first-round pick, with the Raptors receiving All-Star Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green. Leonard has one year left on his deal and had said he wouldn’t play in San Antonio this season; his camp reiterated after Wednesday’s trade that he has no desire to play for anyone other than the Lakers. He’d be an unrestricted free agent next summer and has said he’s unlikely to sign a long term deal with anyone besides Los Angeles, making the trade even more surprising for DeRozan and Raptors fans.
DeRozan’s frustrations and Instagram post make more sense given a report from ESPN’s Chris Haynes, who said that a source close to DeRozan told him that Toronto officials met with DeRozan during the Las Vegas Summer League this week and told him he wouldn’t be traded.
We’ll update this story with more local reaction including thoughts from DeRozan’s high school coach later today.