After finishing the year with the second-best record in the Eastern Conference last year, the Toronto Raptors are off to a tough start. They're 2-7 so far and it's not as if they're waiting for a star player to return from injury or the COVID-19 protocols. They're just simply underperforming.

On the daily Locked On Raptors Podcast, host Sean Woodley explains why it's still too early for the Raptors to start trading players, including franchise cornerstone Kyle Lowry.

Sean Woodley: I think it's way too premature to entertain the idea of a Kyle Lowry trade right now. It's also worth noting that it's going to be extremely difficult for a Kyle Lowry trade to transpire because of the money he makes and because the Raptors still very clearly value flexibility.

You could probably construct some trades out there and throw a bunch of contracts and some picks in and it works on paper. Then in theory, maybe it's not the worst deal for the Raptors to get some assets in return but they're not about tying their cap space up for multiple years on bad contracts just in the name of a couple of extra assets for Kyle Lowry. Look, could an insane bidding war breakout because Kyle area is viewed as the piece that will seal any of these teams' championship equity, maybe? It's kind of a parody driven league right now and there's a lot of different teams that can talk themselves into being great. Maybe there's something there, but it feels pretty difficult to concoct anything.

The teams that could most use him are like the Clippers who have nothing left to trade and the Sixers who are sort of juggling the James Harden talks while also being pretty good and also only have Tobias Harris to send back. I'm sorry, I don't think the Raptors are keen on taking back Tobias Harris' money for the next however many years, it's a lot of years, he's making a ton of money, more money than Fred VanVleet and OG Anunoby combined… So that's not gonna happen. It's just it's very difficult.