Raptors Waive Shamorie Ponds, Sign Paul Watson

5:50pm: The Raptors have officially signed Watson to a two-way deal, tweets Josh Lewenberg of TSN.

7:39am: The Raptors are making a change to one of their two-way contract slots, announcing this morning in a press release that they’ve waived guard Shamorie Ponds. According to Brad Rowland of UPROXX Sports (Twitter link), guard Paul Watson is expected to sign a two-way deal with Toronto.

Ponds, 21, joined the Rockets last summer after going undrafted out of St. John’s. He was cut at the end of the preseason and appeared to be on track to join Houston’s G League affiliate. Instead, he was scooped up a few days later by the Raptors, who signed him to a two-way contract.

While he didn’t see much NBA action, logging 11 total minutes in four games, Ponds has been a regular part of the rotation for the Raptors 905 in the G League. He has averaged 14.4 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 3.3 APG, and 2.1 APG in 18 NBAGL contests (28.1 MPG).

As for Watson, he spent most of the season with the Raptors 905 too before signing a 10-day contract with the Hawks on January 6. Atlanta released Watson on Tuesday, a day before that deal was set to expire. If he had played out his full 10-day pact, he wouldn’t have been eligible to sign a two-way contract before today’s deadline, so the Hawks did him a favor by letting him go early.

The 25-year-old Fresno State alum has averaged 18.4 PPG and 7.4 RPG with a .533 FG% and .467 3PT% in 13 games (34.4 MPG) for Toronto’s G League affiliate this season. Now that the Raptors are getting healthy, Watson will likely continue to spend most of his time at the NBAGL level, rather than with the NBA club.

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