The struggles on the offensive side of the ball this season led Toronto Raptors fans to call for in crease in playing time for shooting guard Terence Davis, who made the leap from undrafted free agent to rotational guard in just one season. While Davis has had his moments on the court this season, he is currently in the middle of a domestic violence case, as he pled not guilty after being charged with assault, harassment, and endangering the welfare of a child. Davis is accused of punching the victim, his girlfriend, multiple times.
As expertly detailed by Nasir Husain in FanSided’s new Fan Voices vertical, the Raptors are preaching one thing while practicing another. On the one hand, they constantly espouse their ability to “do things the right way” while preaching accountability. On the other hand, Davis continues to suit up for the Raptors while these accusations circle overhead.
Should Terence Davis be welcomed back in Toronto before his court case resolves?
Davis’ being accused of striking a woman with a closed fist could be, and honestly should have been, grounds for president Masai Ujiri to hand him his pink slip and wash away any trace of his connection to the Raptors. However, Ujiri chose to keep him around, likely due to the fact that his $1.5 million contract is guaranteed and he could cash in as a restricted free agent in 2021.
Ujiri has rightfully earned praise both on the court, where he helped overhaul the culture in order to give Toronto their first championship in franchise history, and off of it through his Giants of Africa non-profit. However, he has given some questionable statements on this while situation, claiming the Raptors don’t “condone anything that resembles what was alleged to have happened” while still employing Davis.
The NBA’s domestic violence policy, while certainly progressive and better than the old one, is nebulous and somewhat inconsistent with how offenders are treated, and Ujiri choosing to let Davis remain around the team and let the punishment chips fall where they may instead of either cutting him or putting him on administrative leave sends some very mixed messages.
The legal process will decide Davis’ fate and the validity of these allegations, but it still doesn’t look good for Toronto to throw their accountability-centric culture to the side to accommodate him. Hopefully, in the near future, the organization takes a harder stance on Davis in order to maintain their culture, placate their fanbase, and admonish Davis.