Raps setting their sights on Knicks' big man Lee
Doug Smith – Sports Reporter
The Raptors are widening their NBA free-agent search that now includes one of the more intriguing players on the market.
Capping a whirlwind 24 hours to open the negotiating period, league sources say Toronto is trying to obtain David Lee, an energetic rebounder who is a New York Knicks restricted free agent.The sources couldn’t say whether the move on Lee would be a straight offer or whether it would be a sign-and-trade transaction with any of Toronto’s current free agents.
Lee’s name is added to a list that began with Charlie Villanueva – who ultimately signed a five-year, $40 million deal with the Detroit Pistons – and Denver’s Linas Kleiza, a solid if unspectacular part not in the class of Lee.
There is no suggestion anything is imminent, but the attempts to try to get something done with Lee back suggestions before the free-agent period began that Toronto general manager Bryan Colangelo was trying to be creative in improving his roster.
Meanwhile, the Raptors seem to have pulled back on a decision to take a run at Orlando’s Hedo Turkoglu, who now seems a good bet to land in Portland.
Still, two NBA sources said yesterday they thought Turkoglu was more interested in landing in Toronto than the Pacific Northwest.