Fred VanVleet is officially off the free agent market. The Raptors crafty guard has signed a new four-year contract worth $85 million to stay in Toronto. VanVleet was the most coveted point guard on the market and has decided to stay. Keeping VanVleet is huge and continues to build with the Raptors.
The news was first reported by Shams Charania of The Athletic:
VanVleet, 26, was a hell of a point guard at Wichita State. Despite having a great career in college, VanVleet did not get drafted. The former Shockers point guard signed a free agent deal with the Raptors. The rest is history and eventually became the second best player on a championship team. VanVleet’s legacy is already etched in stone.
VanVleet made no secret about wanting to get paid. Earlier in the offseason, VanVleet said this about his contract:
“I’m trying to get paid, man,” he said via JJ Redick’s podcast “The Old Man and the Three. “I’m not shy about that. I don’t have to tell people that I value winning. Like, just look at my story, do your research, I’ve never been on a losing team in my entire life. … I won a championship and now it’s time to cash out. I’m 26. … I’m only four years in (to his NBA career) but I feel like I’m on the verge of blossoming even more, with more of a lead role.”
VanVleet previously signed a two year contract worth $18 million to stay in Toronto. His play warranted a raise. This past year with the Raptors, VanVleet averaged 17.6 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 6.6 assists per year.
A lot of landing spots made sense for VanVleet. At the end of the day, returning to Toronto made a lot of sense. Especially given the new contract. VanVleet gets a huge pay day and Toronto keeps their guy. The Raptors couldn’t let VanVleet walk given the fact that Kyle Lowry is aging.