The Toronto Raptors were looking to lean on Pascal Siakam to be a stabilizing force as they tried to fight their way back to the postseason, but Nick Nurse and the rest of the organization were dealt a major body blow that will make it even tougher for them to turn things around.
The Raptors announced that Siakam underwent surgery to correct a torn labrum in his shoulder. While the NBA season starts on October 19, the expected recovery time for this injury is around five months, meaning that Siakam might not suit up for the first month of the season if the timetable is to be believed.
While this is certainly a gut punch, it is not the end of the world, as the Raptors could create enough cap space to field a competitive team with or without Siakam. They might need to allocate a bit more spending to the frontcourt, however, after this new development.
These 3 Raptors free agency targets could end up playing the power forward or small-ball center role with plenty of aplomb, eventually shrinking back into a solid role player by the time Siakam returns from injury.
These 3 Toronto Raptors free agency targets could help fill in for Pascal Siakam.
3. Paul Millsap, Denver Nuggets
Death, taxes, and Paul Millsap hitting mid-range jumpers down on the block. Having started 36 games at power forward for Denver this year, the 15-year vet did put up a solid 9.0 points per game on 47% shooting despite a very limited amount of shots he was allowed to hoist per game, but that points per game number was his lowest since the 2007-08 season with the Jazz.
Millsap is going to turn 37 next year, but his next NBA contract will likely come for a team that can either give him a chance to chase a ring or allow him to play a defined, yet important, role on or off of the bench. You couldn’t ask for a better backup power forward or temporary starter than Millsap.
Paul Millsap could be a cheap veteran that helps the Toronto Raptors.
While not the best 3-point shooter in the world, Millsap has shown that he can knock it down when he’s given an opening and the green light to shoot. The Raptors were moved around easily in the paint last year, but the stocky Millsap should be able to give them the reinforcement they need on the glass.
If the Raptors are concerned about spending a ton of money, Millsap could represent a much more economical way to get some depth on the interior. He will have plenty of teams in the postseason vying for his services, but that shouldn’t discourage the Raptors from at least taking a look at him.