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Jonas Valanciunas still hopeful he’ll get championship ring from Raptors

Jonas Valanciunas, Grizzlies, Raptors

Even though he wasn’t officially part of the Toronto Raptors roster that won the NBA championship last season, former center Jonas Valanciunas remains hopeful that he’ll still get a ring.

Per TSN, Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry asked Valanciunas via text what his ring size is. There is, however, no official word yet from the Raptors organization whether their former no. 5 overall pick 2011 will get a ring.

“Kyle texted me ‘What’s your ring size?'” Valanciunas said Saturday.

“I asked him ‘What, wedding ring?'” he added with a laugh. “We’ll see. I’m hopeful.”

Lowry can’t play his former teammate like that, can he? That’s just cold if he is actually just messing with JV.

The Raptors shipped the Lithuanian big man in a package to the Memphis Grizzlies at the February trade deadline this past season in exchange for Marc Gasol. As we saw during the 2019 playoffs, Gasol became a major contributor in Toronto’s bid for the championship and played tremendous defense for them from April through June.

Prior to the trade, Valanciunas saw his role dwindle in Toronto. New Raps head coach Nick Nurse relegated him to a bench role for the first time in his career, opting to start Serge Ibaka at center instead.

JV’s minutes, likewise, dropped further from nearly 22 minutes per game the past two seasons, to over just 18 minutes per game in 2018-19. He averaged 12.8 points and 7.2 rebounds in 30 games with Toronto last season.

Moving to Memphis, Valanciuas found new life as their starting center. Though the Grizzlies were essentially playing for nothing at that point of the season, the former no. 5 overall pick still showcased his capabilities. He was nearly a 20-10 guy in his 19 appearances for Memphis.

Valanciunas chose to stick around with the Grizzlies, inking a three-year $45-million deal this past summer.