DeMar DeRozan Says Toronto Trading Him Deeply Impacted Him: “It F**ked Me Up”


In the NBA, trades are part of the game. However, for DeMar DeRozan, the trade from the Toronto Raptors to the San Antonio Spurs wasn’t just a business transaction; it was a deeply personal upheaval that left an indelible mark on his life.

DeRozan, who has been with the Chicago Bulls for three seasons now, has been a consistent star in the league since 2009. Despite approaching his mid-thirties, DeRozan’s performance on the court remains as stellar as ever. Yet, beneath the veneer of professional success lies a story of emotional struggle and resilience.

The trade in July 2018 came as a shock to DeRozan, who had spent the first nine seasons of his career with the Raptors. Toronto was more than just a team; it was home. Alongside his best friend Kyle Lowry, DeRozan had helped transform the Raptors into perennial contenders, reaching the Eastern Conference Finals in 2016. His dedication to the team and the city was unquestionable, and his desire to stay was strong.

But the trade to San Antonio shattered that dream. It wasn’t just the change of teams that affected DeRozan; the timing coincided with his father’s illness, adding a layer of personal grief to professional uncertainty. The impact was profound, sending DeRozan into a period of self-doubt and questioning.

Six years have passed since the trade, but DeRozan’s words still resonate with the pain of that moment.


“It f–ked me up, I’m being honest. It’s crazy. I’m more than comfortable talking about it now but for the longest time, it f–ked me up because, one, that was the place I wanted to be, thought I was going to be, gave everything to,”



He has since become an advocate for mental health, using his platform to support others facing similar challenges. His journey from the shock of the trade to becoming a voice for mental health awareness is a testament to his strength and character.

DeRozan’s experience reminds us that athletes are more than their performance on the field or court. They are individuals with deep emotional lives, and the business side of sports can have significant personal consequences. As fans, it’s important to remember the human element in these transactions and the lasting impact they can have on players’ lives.

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