Now that Giannis Antetokounmpo is no longer on track to reach free agency in 2021 and preserving as much cap room as possible for next summer may no longer been as high a priority for the Raptors, a rookie scale extension for three-and-D wing OG Anunoby before Monday’s deadline looks like a more realistic possibility.
According to Josh Lewenberg of TSN.ca, Anunoby’s camp is thought to be seeking a deal similar to the one Fred VanVleet just signed (four years, $85MM), while the Raptors will likely counter with an annual salary closer to $15MM per year. Lewenberg wonders if the two sides might ultimately agree to something in the $17-18MM range.
Although the Raptors view Anunoby as a big part of its future, there’s no guarantee that will find common ground in the coming days. If the 23-year-old doesn’t sign a new contract on or before Monday, he’ll become a restricted free agent during the 2021 offseason.
Here’s more on the Raptors:
- Kyle Lowry is also entering a contract year, but he said today that he hasn’t spoken to the front office about his future beyond this season (Twitter link via Lewenberg). “My goal is to stay focused on trying to win a championship for the Raptors,” Lowry said. “I’ll let the other stuff play itself out.” Unlike Anunoby, Lowry isn’t currently eligible to sign an extension.
- Despite not playing in their home city to start the 2020/21 regular season, the Raptors will be one of a handful of NBA teams hosting fans in their arena. The club issued a press release earlier this week announcing plans to host 3,800 fans for regular season games in Tampa. According to the Raptors, no seats within 30 feet of the court will be available, and a number of other safety measures will be in place, including fans being required to wear masks and practice physical distancing while in the building. Fans will also be screened when they enter the arena and will be prohibited from bringing in bags.
- DeAndre’ Bembry is making a strong impression on Raptors head coach Nick Nurse, who said that it’s “hard to keep (him) off the floor,” per Blake Murphy of The Athletic (Twitter link). The newly-signed swingman sounds like a good bet to be one of the first players off the bench for the club.