The Toronto Raptors managed to both retain some of their big-name free agents and bring in a new rotation member in the early stages of the NBA offseason. Not only were Chris Boucher and Thad Young signed to multi-year contracts, but Otto Porter Jr. was signed away from the Golden State Warriors.
The Raptors are not usually a free agent destination, so the activeness this offseason shows that Masai Ujiri is willing to splurge on free agents if it means he can get an immediate short-term upgrade. The fact he did so without exceeding $12 million per year on any one deal is exemplary negotiating.
While there haven’t been too many overly bizarre contracts so far in free agency, there have been a few that make you at least scratch your head and wonder what exactly the team in question is up to. They could be in for some buyer’s remorse if one or two things go awry.
The Porter deal Toronto put the finishing touches on was widely regarded as a savvy move that helps the team win now without being financially crippling in the short term. The same can not be said of these three contracts, who could go sideways next year.
Toronto Raptors: 3 contracts the Otto Porter Jr. deal is better than
3. JaVale McGee, Dallas Mavericks
This one doesn’t sound terrible on paper. McGee has proven he can contribute to championship teams in the last few seasons, and he fills a need for a Dallas squad that needs rim protection. That doesn’t excuse the fact that McGee came to the Mavericks on a complete overpay.
McGee signed a three-year, $20 million deal with the Mavericks even though he will almost assuredly come off the bench. The loss of Chris Paul orchestrating the offense might make it hard for him to replicate his breakout offensive season with Phoenix.
The Toronto Raptors were wise not to pay JaVale McGee.
McGee is going to turn 37 by the time his contract ends. Even if the Mavericks want to flip him in a trade, he isn’t going to offer much on the back end of that contract other than being a lob threat that can be found elsewhere in the league. McGee aging rapidly could put a black mark over Dallas’ offseason.
The Raptors came into the offseason needing some height and shot-blocking, and they chose to address that in the draft after acquiring Christian Koloko. Signing McGee, who would be an unusual fit on offense for Nick Nurse, would be quite the expensive deviation from Ujiri’s plan.