The Toronto Raptors had a number of players on their roster at the start of the 2018-19 season that were no longer with the team when they hoisted the Larry O’Brien Trophy in June.
Unfortunately for Jonas Valanciunas, Delon Wright and C.J. Miles, they will not receive championship rings as former members of the Raptors.
All three were involved in the deal that brought Marc Gasol to Toronto this past February, but Mike Ganter of the Toronto Sun reports that the Raptors will not give them rings.
Although general manager Bobby Webster acknowledged that it was a difficult decision, he also stated that he felt that what the Raptors were doing (or, in this case, not doing) was “standard:”
“Its not an easy decision,” Webster began, “but, to be honestI think it’s standard. I mean we did our homework, we talked to teams and I think – I don’t remember – there was maybe one scenario where a team offered one. I think it was Anderson Varejao in Golden State but I think it was a really unique circumstance.”
It was clearly an uncomfortable discussion for Webster to be having.
“It’s obviously not a feel-good thing but I think that’s the way the league is,” he said.
Valanciunas probably has the best claim to a ring. He was drafted by the Raptors in 2011 and spent the first six-plus years of his career in Toronto. Ganter also reported that former teammate Kyle Lowry had asked Valanciunas for his ring size.
Nevertheless, the three former Raptors will come away empty-handed.