It’s always fun when a Toronto Raptors player reflects his thoughts on the team and himself.
If you haven’t heard. Toronto Raptors guard, Fred VanVleet, has appeared on The Old Man and the Three (JJ Redick’s podcast). He shares his journey to the NBA, thoughts on the bubble, and most importantly what he is prioritizing this free agency.
Fred VanVleet pretty much let’s is be known from the get-go what is important to him.
"“I’m not shy about that, I’m trying to get paid man. I value winning, I’ve won a championship, now it’s time to cash out. It’s not purely numbers but at then end of the day I just want to feel my value reciprocated on the other side”"
VanVleet also goes on to mention the uncertainty surrounding where the Toronto Raptors will play. His current situation was already not the greatest, saying that he doesn’t have a home in Toronto and he was only renting. Not knowing where he’ll be living yet certainly doesn’t help the Raptors case.
Should Raptors fans be concerned? It feels like he’s done what he had to do with the Toronto Raptors when he played a key part in their championship run. And if they are not willing to pay him exactly what he wants, he may just be on his way out.
We know VanVleet wants a four-year deal, but the Raptors cannot overpay him. The only teams with the financial flexibility to give VanVleet big money are the Atlanta Hawks, New York Knicks, and Detroit Pistons. Aside from the Hawks, not the best teams to be in if you want to win.
Is Brogdon’s situation last year comparable?
What Malcolm Brogdon went through the last offseason might be the most comparable situation to VanVleet this year. Brogdon got $85 million over a four-year deal with the Indiana Pacers last summer (an average salary of $21.25 million). A great deal for a player like Brogdon, but it definitely feels as if VanVleet would get more — $22-24 million would be a good deal, anything more would be an overpay.
In the end, it is all up to Masai Ujiri and Bobby Webster to make the decision. They might value him way more than we anticipated, or they might not be willing to overpay the way the Knicks or Pistons might.
If you are wondering where to watch the episode here it is.