Rondae Hollis-Jefferson brings the hustle mentality and a positive culture to the Toronto Raptors organization.
Yes, I know there are some massive names hitting the free-agent market from the Toronto Raptors roster, but other than Fred Vanvleet I don’t know if the front office is fully tied to any of the outgoing players. Fred is the obvious future and natural-born leader but Marc Gasol and Serge Ibaka are 35 and 31, respectively, and are undoubtedly on the back end of their careers. To be honest it doesn’t seem like the two big guys fit into the Raptors future whatsoever.
That leads us to the second tier of outgoing free-agents full of role players and bench strengtheners. None of whom have been more impactful than Rondae Hollis-Jefferson.
The Raptors snatched Rondae Hollis-Jefferson up in the dog days of summer and was a player that many Raptors fans weren’t too familiar with other than games versus the Brooklyn Nets where he would come off the bench. He signed a 1 year/$2.5 million contract to show what he had as a sort of tryout contract. It was a tough start for Rondae.
Late in camp, Nurse was asked for his impressions of the Raptors’ new arrivals, specifically Hollis-Jefferson and forward Stanley Johnson. Nurse responded by suggesting the bench candidates had yet to understand how hard the Raptors play, their schemes, and that defense is a top priority.
Every word out of Nick Nurse’s mouth pertaining to Hollis-Jefferson after that was all positive. Rondae quickly learned his role and the Raptors culture and became an immediate fan favorite in Toronto. His work ethic and his Swiss Army knife skill set helped him drastically over perform his low money contract and helped the Raps plug any hole necessary during their hundreds of man-games lost due to injury.
Before the season pause, Hollis-Jefferson was getting starts which were a definite first for his career. Along with his play, Rondae is a great personality who gets along great with his teammates, coaches, and the media.
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson is an ideal do it all, hardworking player who can put up points, fight for rebounds, and assist dimes. He accepts any role given to him and steps up to any role coach Nurse asks. He is a perfect fit with the Raptors culture and a great chemistry guy.
Hot Take Alert: After Fred VanVleet the Raptors should turn their in-house free agent attention to Rondae Hollis-Jefferson.