Raptor Notes: Lowry, Achiuwa, Dragic, Birch, TPE, Ujiri

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Kyle Lowry on the Knicks off-season radar – fr


There was speculation leading to free agency that Toronto would make an effort to re-sign the veteran point guard Kyle Lowry, but the comments made on Friday by the six-fold All-Star and by Guys general director Bobby Webster suggested that both sides felt the time had come to move on, writes TSN.ca’s Josh Lewenberg.

“I think the direction Toronto is going is that they want to give opportunities to (Fred Van Vleet), Pascal (Siakam), OG (Anunoby), some young guys, the young draft picks they have, ” Lowry told reporters. “They have great base pieces. They are in good hands and in great shape. It was a situation for me where it was an opportunity to do something different… It’s time to turn the page of the book.

Webster expressed a similar sentiment: “You could probably see (in the second half of 2020/21) the direction the team was going and jump into the draft to get the fourth pick, philosophically I think getting young has become kind of a more path. desirable. “

Once they recognized that Lowry would move on, the Raptors could have decided to let him walk in order to open the cap room to pursue a free agent. However, this path offered less certainty, especially if the team made an offer to a restricted free agent (such as Jarrett Allen) not knowing if it would be matched. The Raptors preferred to acquire Goran Dragic and Precious Achiuwavia a signing and a trade with the Heat, writes Lewenberg.

“Precious is a huge part of this deal for us”, this Webster. “We really liked him last year in the draft so I think it was a huge blow in the direction of a young player that we love and who matches us. “

Learn more about the Raptors:

  • Throughout the week, there have been rumors that Toronto may try to turn Dragic into a third team after acquiring him by signing and trading. Webster said on Friday it was not Plan A. “Obviously, if we received an offer that was too good to refuse, we would listen to it, but ultimately we want Goran here” said the Raptors general manager, per Lewenberg. “He is happy to be here, he has obviously been able to carve out a very good career. Talk to (team president) Masaï (Employment), talking to everyone here we saw him a ton and I know a lot of people saw him kill us. As a basketball player, as a veterinarian, he brings us a lot. “
  • After his new three-year contract with the Guys was officially announced on Friday, Canadian center Khem Birch told reporters he was focused throughout free agency on returning to the team, as the Toronto Star’s Doug Smith writes. “It’s like a dream come true” said Birch. “It’s so surreal right now… just one of those free agencies where I knew where I wanted to go. I don’t even know what other teams were interested in me. I just wanted to come here regardless of the price or the years or whatever. I just knew it was a good fit. I’m just happy to be here.
  • The Raptors will generate a traded player exception due to the Kyle Lowry sign and trade in Miami. It’ll be worth somewhere between $ 4.8 million and $ 7.7 million, depending on the specific structure of Lowry’s new contract, writes The Athletic’s Blake Murphy.
  • Speaking to Jared Weiss of The Athletic, president of the Raptors Larry Tanenbaum confirmed that Masaï EmploymentThe new title of vice president will not give him a stake in the franchise, but said it reflects his position in the organization. “I chair the Raptors, but it’s just a recognition that we are really working together,” this Tanenbaum. “We are partners.
  • Tanenbaum added in the same interview that the team’s plan is to have Lowry retire as the Raptor on the Road and retire his number. “He will retire as a Raptor and his number will absolutely go up there,” this Tanenbaum. “Honor will be first (for the Raptors) and I love Kyle. “

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