Report: New York Knicks suing Toronto Raptors, allege former employee ‘illegally took thousands of proprietary files’ with him to Toronto

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read
Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks are suing the Toronto Raptors, alleging that a former employee “illegally took thousands of proprietary files with him to his new position” with Toronto, according to’s Ian Begley.

According to Begley, the lawsuit alleges that former employee Ikechukwu Azotam took information and shared it with members of the Raptors organization. The material included play frequency reports, a prep book for the 2022-23 season as well as video scouting material.

The information was reportedly shared with Raptors head coach Darko Rajaković and player development coach Noah Lewis.

According to Begley, the Knicks contacted the Raptors prior to filing the lawsuit. Azotam supposedly signed a confidentiality clause with the Knicks, but it appears that New York is alleging that he violated that agreement.

These are some major allegations against Azotam and the Raptors. It’s unclear if the team might face punishment from the NBA.

The two teams are rivals – playing in the same division – so extra information transferred from New York to Toronto could certainly give the Raptors a leg up in games.

The Knicks released a statement through a Madison Square Garden Sports spokesperson.

The Knicks and Raptors are both hoping to be playoff teams in the 2023-24 season. Toronto’s playoff hopes might depend on whether or not they keep key pieces such as Pascal Siakam and O.G. Anunoby. The Raptors missed the playoffs in the 2022-23 season, losing in the play-in tournament to the Chicago Bulls.

New York was the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Conference last season, and it defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first round of the playoffs. While the Knicks did lose to the Miami Heat in the second round, the team showed it can compete with some of the best squads in the conference.

The addition of Jalen Brunson really transformed New York in the 2022-23 season, and it certainly has an upward trajectory heading into this season.

Hopefully, the situation between the Knicks and Raptors will be resolved by the legal system in a timely manner so it’s not hanging over either organization when the regular season begins.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball, football and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.