The number one task of the Toronto Raptors, during this offseason, is to keep their free agents on this roster. The first, and most difficult, task was Kyle Lowry. Masai Ujiri and Dwane Casey managed to convince him to stay and be the leader, or the co-leader along with DeRozan, so he has agreed to sign a new 4-year contract with the team. The other 3 free agents left were (sorted with significance order), Patrick Patterson, Greivis Vasquez and Nando De Colo.
Patterson was one of the 4 ex-Kings players that came to Toronto via the Rudy Gay trade back in December 2013. The other 3 were Vasquez, Hayes and Salmons. Patrick helped the team a lot, even coming from the bench and resting Amir Johnson, even starting the games, due to Amir’s ankle injuries. During his tenure with the Raptors, he had very effective appearances resulting to stats as 9.1 points with 41.1 3pt %, 5.1 rebounds, 1.3 assists and almost 1 steal per game. He helped our team both defensively and offensively, inside and outside the arc.
He, and Vasquez, were the players that changed our team’s performance last season, which ended finding Raptors in the playoffs and losing the advancement to the second round by a shot.
So, Patrick’s agreement of new contract was a sign of team’s continuation of success while keeping the solid core. Today Jeff Goodman reported that Paterson agreed to a 3-year, $18 million deal with the Raptors. Ryan Wolstat from Toronto Sun is reporting that Vasquez is also close to re-signing.
This is great news. The Raps’ exceptional chemistry should remain in the locker room and on the floor. For me, re-signing Lowry and Patterson are great steps for our team’s success, and shows everybody that something is changing in Toronto. We don’t “rebuild” every season, by losing our talent and trying to acquire a whole roster. This is the right path for consistency and success.
If Greivis re-signs too, we can assume that Nando De Colo will be history. The acquisition of Lou Williams indicates that we don’t need 4 guards (Lowry, Williams, Vasquez and De Colo) in our roster, and financially it would not be a very good move. If this report is true, then our 37th pick DeAndre Daniels may be utilized next season as Novak was.
After Patterson’s new contract, Raptors have $7.5 million to spend for contracts. If Vasquez agrees on the $3.2m – $3.5 price range, there is almost $4 million left. Of course, we are talking with the current team’s status. Until the start of the 2015 season, many things could change.
PS. I’m afraid that we have to stand Fields’ contract for another season. And we are talking a huge one, for his productivity ($8.5 million). Chuck Hayes ($5.45 million) could be involved in trade talks. He could help many teams with his hustle and veteran presence.