NBA Free Agency Frenzy Begins – Raptors quiet


With NBA free agency having begun only hours ago the league has already seen significant change. Let’s recap the biggest names and what’s gone on so far:

There were several other deals reportedly struck in the wee hours of the morning but those listed above represent what’s happening with the leagues biggest names. All this goes to say that no one has poached any Raptors free agents yet. Let’s check in on what’s happening with them.


Kyle Lowry: NBA TV’s David Aldridge was reporting this morning that Lowry’s agent met with Raptors representatives late into the night. The market for Lowry may be drying up quickly. The strongest interest in Kyle prior to the beginning of free agency was purported to be from Minnesota and more specifically Jimmy Butler. However, with the addition of Jeff Teague the Wolves have filled their point guard vacancy. Also with Chris Paul already in Houston that appears to be a non starter for Lowry as well. Last week his hometown 76ers chose Markelle Fultz with the No. 1 overall draft pick eliminating their need for a floor general too. Aldridge also reported that he believes Lowry will get an offer from Toronto close to what DeMar DeRozan received last summer (5yrs-139 million). Is this price to high for K-Low? You tell me.

TORONTO, ON – APRIL 15: DeMar DeRozan
TORONTO, ON – APRIL 15: DeMar DeRozan /

Serge Ibaka: Ibaka and Lowry share the same agent, Andy Miller. This is good for Toronto. Everything reported on Lowry directly impacts Ibaka. Miller knows that keeping the band together is good for both his clients from a basketball standpoint, but then again agents always have more than basketball on their minds. The rumor mill has Ibaka drawing interest from the Rockets, however with Paul George and Jimmy Butler both heading to the western conference the east may be ripe for the Raptors’ picking. Although the ClevelandBoston impediments still remain those two teams haven’t done anything to get better so far. Over the last few weeks it has been repeatedly reported that Toronto and Ibaka had a handshake agreement on a renewed contract worth about $20 million annually. Assuming this number and that agreement is a reality the Raptors would have about $75 million (approximately) assigned to the trio of DeRozan-Lowry-Ibaka next season. With cap projections settling at just a hair over 99 million next season this commits about 3 quarters of the teams money to their “big three”. The need to unload salary this off season now becomes crystal clear.

TORONTO, ON – APRIL 18: P.J. Tucker
TORONTO, ON – APRIL 18: P.J. Tucker /

P.J. Tucker: A tweet from Hoops Rumors had Tucker meeting with the Raptors last night . Nothing new to report on this other than commenting that if you meet with a free agent of Tuckers elk immediately after free agency begins (as was reported) then you can make the conclusion that he is indeed desired and strongly so. Tucker like Ibaka only had a half a season to prove his worth in a Raptors jersey this time around, but he stood out as a defensive leader for Toronto and one they would sorely miss if he left. When a meeting happens this fast it’s always a good sign for an incumbent team.

PHOENIX, AZ – FEBRUARY 02: Patrick Patterson
PHOENIX, AZ – FEBRUARY 02: Patrick Patterson /

Patrick Patterson: Sam Amick has reported that Patterson is to meet with the Kings at some point this weekend. If there is one Raptor I’m sure will leave it’s Patterson. PJ Tucker basically came in and provided exactly what the combo of Carroll and Patterson was suppose to provide – floor spacing and tough defence. If Tucker is indeed headed back to Tdot then assume Patterson isn’t.

All that is to say that it’s been a fast first 12 hours to the NBA’s 2017 free agency period. A lot of sleep lost and a lot of moves made, and no doubt more to come. If the initial hours are any indication this will be a very fun free agency period to watch.