Don’t be surprised if San Antonio Spurs big man jakob poeltl finishes the 2022-23 NBA season with another team. Sources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic that Poeltl has been generating interest around the league, particularly mentioning two Atlantic Division teams in the forms of the Boston Celtics and the Toronto Raptors, as among those keeping a close eye on the former first-round selection.
“However, one organization emerges every deadline as a key hub for the entire NBA. This season, it could be San Antonio. Spurs center Jakob Poeltl has gained significant trade interest from teams such as the Toronto Raptors and Boston Celtics, according to league sources who, like all the other sources in this story, were granted anonymity so that they would be able to speak freely,” Charania reports.
Jakob Poeltl is arguably the best player on a struggling Spurs team that is on well on course to score a high pick in the 2023 NBA Draft. The Spurs are 13-31 at the moment and have been playing just as badly as anyone would have expected a team of such makeup this season. But there are bright spots on the team like Poeltl, who is averaging 12.3 points and 9.4 rebounds per game this season.
Poeltl also leads the Spurs in both win shares (2.5) and value above replacement player (0.8).
The Celtics could use additional beef in the frontcourt, which Poeltl can provide along with his scoring abilities around the rim. The Raptors are very much familiar with the big man. After all, they’re the ones who drafted the former Utah Utes star ninth overall in 2016.
Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, however, thinks that it’s also possible for the Raptors to be sellers instead of buyers ahead of the trade deadline if they continue to rack up losses.
“But if the losses keep piling, and the Raptors steer in the direction of the Tampa Tank that netted Barnes at No. 4 in the 2021 NBA Draft, Toronto will have no shortage of buyers in this current seller’s market,” Fischer added.
In two seasons with the Raptors, Poeltl averaged 5.4 points and 4.1 rebounds in only 15.8 minutes across 136 games of which he started in only four outings.