2. The Jakob Poeltl contract
Poeltl is not a bad player. In fact, he is still the best rim protector on the team by leaps and bounds while also giving Toronto an elite screener. That being said, they committed to Poeltl with the thought he could be a Top 10 center this season, and he hasn’t lived up to the hype in that area.
Not only is Poeltl barely averaging more than 10 points per game, but his defense has been lacking. While he can still swat shots at the rim, playing without OG Anunoby exposed some of his limitations. Teams like the Bucks let Damian Lillard abuse Poeltl in pick-and-roll situations once he got far away from the basket.
Jakob Poeltl’s contract could hurt the Toronto Raptors.
Poeltl is still a tremendous finisher at the basket, but a lineup that already lacks shooting now has to play a complete non-shooter for heavy minutes. Due to his poor foul shooting, Poeltl has often been benched at the end of games in favor of a better shooter in Porter.
There’s nothing wrong with Poeltl as a starting center, but giving up what will likely be a lottery pick and then handing him an $80 million contract over four years could make it tough for Toronto to build a solid offensive team, especially when their two best players can’t space the floor.