Apart from the basketball itself, trades and other forms of player transaction are what make the NBA so entertaining to fans. But for players, trades can be life-changing, especially if they're leaving a team that has a special place in their heart. Via the Players' Tribune, Portland Trail Blazers guard Norman Powell shared some of the intimate details on how he realized that he was no longer part of the Toronto Raptors roster.
To recall, Powell was traded to the Blazers at the trade deadline. In a strange turn of events, his first game donning the Blazers jersey happened to be against the Raptors. Powell explained how quick and strange the times were after the trade:
So, like, I still had my place. Still drove my normal route to the hotel where we’d get tested. But now instead of going to the left, where the Raptors test, I had to go to the right, where the road team tests. And instead of heading to Level 3, I had my team meeting on Level 2. Just little stuff like that. It was a weird feeling, man.
Actually, here’s how weird it was: I purposely came in a little late — just out of the hope that I could avoid having to run into people and go through more emotions.
But of course that move never works.
A few minutes after I got there, a bunch of the Raptors started showing up.
And I think that’s about when it really started to hit me — like, Oh, man. This is real.
This is really goodbye.
Raptors fans will forever remember the things that Norman Powell has done to the organization. They definitely wish that Powell would've stayed with them longer and not traded to the Blazers, but if ever they miss him, all they need to do is look at the 2019 NBA Championship banner hanging on the rafters.