The Toronto Raptors waited until very late in the night before filling their third and final two-way roster spot. After signing Markquis Nowell immediately after the NBA Draft and inking Ron Harper Jr. in the immediate aftermath of Summer League, the Raptors agreed to terms with former Chicago Bulls guard Javon Freeman-Liberty.
Not only was Freeman-Liberty one of the best scorers in the country during his collegiate career at DePaul, but his play in Summer League was so dominant that some wondered if he would get a proper NBA deal when it was all said and done. Instead, he is making the journey to Toronto.
Bulls fans seem to be very irritated that one of their more promising young prospects was allowed to leave and join an equally talented team without them getting anything in return. The anger towards Arturas Karnisovas for letting JFL find his way out of Chicago is palpable.
Bulls fans angry after Toronto Raptors sign Javon Freeman-Liberty.
The front office appears to be on its last legs, as even a player of Freeman-Liberty’s stature is provoking some severe reactions. It seemed like such an obvious decision to make, and the Bulls managed to bungle it in a reasonably embarrassing fashion before the start of the season.
The Bulls signed Turkish shooter Onuralp Bitim to one of the two-way spots and signed Raptors free agent target Ayo Dosunmu to a three-year deal. The Bulls allocated a ton of money to Dosunmu and Coby White, but their Summer League system’s crown jewel couldn’t get the same respect.
Dosunmu might be a better player right now than Freeman-Liberty, but some Bulls fans seem to be upset with the fact that the team committed to Dosunmu on such a long-term deal while allowing a Chicago-born high school star and DePaul alum to bolt for somewhere else.
The Raptors may not get a ton of production from Freeman-Liberty this season, but rolling the dice on a young bucket-getter like him is better than trying to get yet another 6-9 forward and throwing them onto the proverbial fire.
The Raptors have to be thrilled with the fact that Freeman-Liberty was even available after such a strong Summer League performance. Look for him, Harper, and Nowell to take turns tearing the G League apart this season before getting some brief moments of glory at the NBA level.