The Toronto Raptors shouldn’t necessarily be ruled out as big spenders in free agency, as doing so could help the squad end up on the fringes of that contending tier in the Eastern Conference. The New York Knicks might be the leader in the clubhouse for Mitchell Robinson, but Toronto should at least do their due diligence on him.
Robinson has had a roller-coaster career so far, as he has gone from a 5-star recruit who left college to a second-round pick to a legitimate starter in the pros. When you’re 7-1 with one of the longest wingspans in the NBA, it’s easy to lean on your physical tools at this level.
Robinson has the opportunity to cash in during the offseason if the Knicks allow him to seriously test the market. Teams like the Mavericks are already started to extend their feelers out for him. Toronto needs to be included in that group given how Robinson is a significant shot in the arm in two areas the Raptors need to improve.
Watching Khem Birch and Chris Boucher match up against some of the league’s best big men in the paint last year was one of the main reasons that Toronto was unable to crack the top four teams in the East. Despite his limited offensive game, Robinson is worth a hefty contract on the back of his defense.
Will the Toronto Raptors sign Mitchell Robinson?
Over the last three seasons, Robinson has averaged 8.9 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks per game. One of the best dunker spot finishers in the sport, Robinson has used his 7-0 frame and gangly arms to make 73% of his shots. Robinson can average double-digits per game without being a high-usage player.
Robinson can cover ground in the paint thanks to raw athleticism and is physically talented enough to block shots on defense. Birch tried his best to be that guy for Toronto, but these two players are not in the same tier.
Robinson can get maybe one or two shots in any given game and still be a productive player as a screener, rebounder, and defensive force. Still just 24 years old, Robinson could easily end up becoming a long-term building block. While he will require a three or four-year contract, he won’t approach anything near nine figures in overall value.
Taking a player away from the Knicks and making him one of the cornerstones of the Raptors’ everyday lineup would be quite the move for Masai Ujiri to pull off. Doing so while taking away an instant starter like Robinson would put a big Band-Aid over Toronto’s biggest area of weakness.