Babcock's phone still isn't ringing

STEVE BUFFERY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 6:44 AM ET

A number of NBA general managers have contacted the Raptors to express interest in acquiring Vince Carter. Unfortunately for Carter, that number happens to be zero.

"I haven't had one call," Raptors GM Rob Babcock said, when asked yesterday about interest around the league in his disgruntled superstar.

"And there is no reason for them (to call) because they know what our stance is," Babcock said. "They know what we're looking for in any trade involving our players."

In Carter's case, Babcock won't consider a trade unless he is offered a deal that will substantially improve the Raptors. Trading a star such as Carter, who will make $12.6 million US this season, for equal value in a league with a salary cap is difficult to say the least, particularly when the GM is not in a hurry to make the move.

Carter publicly announced last week that he wants to be traded from the Raptors after spending the summer letting his agent, mother and various friends make the demands for him.

Putting an even bigger gun to Babcock's head, Carter's agent, Mark Steinberg, said that his client would likely only accept a trade to a team in the Eastern Conference.

Not that any of that has thrown Babcock for a loop. The first year Raptors GM said that serious interest in Carter has been pretty quiet all summer.

"Vince's comments don't change anything," Babcock said. "Word was already out on the streets that he wanted out."

With NBA training camps opening in a mere two weeks, most teams have already solidified their rosters.

Mark Cuban, owner for the Dallas Mavericks, told the FAN 590 yesterday that his organization contacted the Raptors earlier in the summer to inquire about Carter, but are no longer interested.

"Right after we lost Steve Nash, we actually did talk to the Raptors, and they made it clear that they weren't interested in trading Vince," Cuban told the FAN's Chuck Swirsky. "But that was before we got Jason Terry (a guard from Atlanta)."

The Raptors announced yesterday the signing of forward Matt Bonner, a second-round pick with the Chicago Bulls in 2003. The 6-foot-10, 240-pound Bonner played for Sicilia in the Italian A1 League last season, where he averaged 19.2 points and 9.3 rebounds per game. The deal is reportedly a one-year, non-guaranteed contract worth about $400,000. Bonner averaged 10.4 points and 6.8 rebounds for the Raptors in the Minneapolis Summer League.

"I really like him, he's got a chance to make the team" Babcock said. "He's a hard worker, he's physical, aggressive and he's a 6-foot-10 guy who can shoot the three, which is a very valuable asset to have."


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