Prying Masai Ujiri From Toronto Expected To Be Pricey

The Raptors simply aren’t going to let president of basketball operations Masai Ujiri waltz down to New York and take the Knicks‘ job before his contract – which runs through the 2020/21 campaign – expires. New York would have to send Toronto compensation if the franchise intends to hire him this summer and Ujiri wants to leave — but what would that compensation look like?

Ian Begley of sniffed around for the answer and learned that one NBA team recently demanded two first-round picks when another club inquired about letting its top executive out of his contract. Talks between those two teams stalled because of the price tag, but Begley hears that the two first-rounders are likely to be the baseline for any Ujiri-to-New York deal.

Raptors chairman Larry Tannenbaum recently said Ujiri wasn’t going anywhere. “He is the best,” Tanenbaum said. “But no team can come to talk to him. That’s tampering. And every owner knows that. Masai is here to stay.”

It’s not certain whether or not Ujiri has interest in the Knicks despite widespread speculation. There were conflicting reports on whether the executive turned down a long-term extension with the Raptors, with Tannenbaum denying that the team had made such an offer yet.

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14 thoughts on “Prying Masai Ujiri From Toronto Expected To Be Pricey

    • I give no fox

      I agree… it makes no sense for the Knicks to part with picks. Also, why would ujiri want to leave for a rebuilding squad that just traded away picks, something kind of important if you are in a rebuild. It would only make sense for a team on the verge of contention or with a solid but underperforming roster, like when the clippers traded for doc.

      • Jason Lancaster

        And why would Ujuri want to work for Jimmy Dolan? I still haven’t seen anything to suggest he’s interested.

        This is NY media obsessing over a non story.

      • Yes, because management knows what to do with those picks, hence Ntilikina, Knox, moving KP for Smith and a first round that may be 20+. Barrett was a no brainer, and luckily they didn’t scare that one up, either.

  1. emac22

    Would Toronto rather have 2 first round picks or 50 million dollars in cash?

    • Theone23

      Uh, obviously the picks if it came to that. MLSE which owns the Raps is owned by Rogers which is the biggest telecommunications company in Canada and is a multi multi billion dollar company. $50 million would hardly move the needle. Typical New Yorker thinking the Knicks or any new York team can pay for anyone or anything they want LOL

      • ColossusOfClout

        Nice try but Rogers owns the Jays too and they are known penny pinchers. Knicks are still the most valuable franchise in the NBA, the Raps not so much.

      • amk3510

        I have news for you the owner could care less about picks if the alternative is 50 million.

        • DVail1979

          yes who cares about winning when you can pocket $50 mio right? Screw the fan base loo

        • jump shot

          Agreed! Let’s see if they give him 50mil+ to stay!
          But, true story… my mother passed a week ago tomorrow morning. I’d rather she still be here than have 50mil.

          • SuperSinker

            Sorry to hear that man. Hopefully NBA can be something to take your mind off that.

      • wilcfc

        Rogers does not own MLSE. Two very different and separate companies. MLSE owns Leafs, Raptors, TFC plus some other minor league things. Rogers owns the Jays and yes they pinch pennies but in a rebuild why overspend? 2017 payroll was $165 million. 5th in the league. They will spend when the time is right….Masai isn’t going anywhere unless a piece of the ownership is given and know one is doing that.

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