The Toronto Raptors and Bryan Colangelo brought in Rudy Gay in February as a last-ditch effort to save several years of maneuvering that hadn't been going so well. Gay was available for cheap and was supposed to be a significant upgrade over any of the players sent out to acquire him.
In theory, Gay would supersede DeMar DeRozan as the primary wing scorer, providing the isolation scoring from the wing that the team needed. He would be the infusion of pure talent that they lacked. And even though he didn't fit on paper alongside Derozan and Andrea Bargnani, the defense and rebounding of Kyle Lowry, Jonas Valanciunas, Amir Johnson and Landry Fields would offset it, as would the shooting of Terrence Ross. The sheer infusion of talent he represented would make it worthwhile.
In reality, it didn't work. Bargnani regressed to the point he became toxic, Lowry struggled, the team failed to find cohesiveness and defense. Meanwhile, DeRozan and Gay did not mesh at all. DeRozan in fact looks noticeably improved thus far this season and has ultimately ended up being the one who surpassed Gay. Arguably always surplus to requirements, Gay subsequently became extremely surplus to requirements, and at an enormous price tag. Even in spite of how recently he had arrived, it was clear that he had to go. But it looked impossible.
Note: Non-US teams that the player
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that nation. If a league or division name is expressly stated, it's not
the top division. The only exceptions to this are the rare occasions where
no one league is said to be above the other, such as with the JBL/BJ League
split in Japan.