The Toronto Raptors have several big-name free agents that could decide to leave the squad, with Chris Boucher chief among them. The stingy big man is ready to cash in with a multi-year contract after the last two seasons of providing heart and hustle off the Toronto bench.
Boucher has averaged 11.2 points and 6.4 rebounds per game over the last two seasons, putting him in a prime position to finally get the well-compensated deal that he has been seeking for the previous few seasons. Boucher might not return to Toronto if the Raptors find a cheaper alternative.
Boucher has already proven to be a bench presence that can contribute to a team with an eye on a deep postseason run. Some of Toronto’s foes in the Eastern Conference are likely to have taken notice of Boucher and how he could effortlessly slide into their rotation.
The Raptors might want to bring Boucher back, but they will have competition from some Eastern Conference teams that may impede Toronto’s progress. Seeing Boucher leave and immediately benefit one of Toronto’s main enemies could be very tough to watch for Masai Ujiri.
3. Chicago Bulls
The Bulls might be having the slightest bit of buyer’s remorse, as they gave away multiple first-round picks for a player in Nikola Vucevic that did not play like an All-Star. Patrick Williams’ injury only made the situation in the frontcourt worse now that the No. 4 pick has durability concerns.
Boucher won’t be in the starting lineup with Chicago, but he likely won’t be asked to carry a considerable load. Coming off the bench and providing that same blend of relentless speed and versatility will make Chicago’s second unit deep enough to kickstart a playoff run.
The Bulls would have use for Chris Boucher.
The Bulls were fourth in the league in 3-point percentage last season, so that offensive staff might be able to get him back on the right track after a down season last year. If his shooting gets fixed, Boucher could easily average in the double digits as one of the team’s principal reserves.
Chicago will likely try to keep Zach LaVine in the backcourt and use whatever financial freedom they have left to address the lack of depth behind Vucevic. Boucher would be one heck of a godsend for Chicago, much to the chagrin of his old teammates north of the border.