New Toronto Raptors general manager Masai Ujiri’s first piece of business with his new team appears to be moving embattled forward Andrea Bargnani.
According to ESPN’s Marc Stein, Ujiri is looking to offload Bargnani and his massive contract before July 1.
First order of biz for new Raps GM Masai Ujiri: Word is he'll shop Andrea Bargnani everywhere he can in hopes of moving him before July 1
— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) June 1, 2013
Former general manager Bryan Colangelo tried to trade the former first-overall pick ahead of the NBA’s Feb. 21 deadline, but no deal came to fruition.
The biggest hurdle in trading Bargnani is the contract extension he signed with the Raptors in 2009, which will pay him more the $22 million over the next two seasons. If Ujiri is unable to find a worth-while trade before free agency begins he could amnesty Bargnani during the seven-day window in July.
Bargnani’s contract isn’t the only unattractive one that Ujiri will have to deal with in his new role as Rudy Gay is owed $37 million over the next two seasons while Landry Fields is set to be paid $12.5 million.
Bargnani’s 2012-13 season was one of his worst since being drafted by Toronto in 2006. The Italian played in just 35 games, averaging 12.7 points, 1.1 assists and 0.7 blocks per game. He was eventually shut down for the season in March due to an elbow injury.