Press Conference Done and Contract Signed as Raps Lock up Freddy
The Bench Mob has officially been left in tact! Fred VanVleet is here to stay!
“We all know Fredʼs personal motto is ʻBet on Yourself.ʼ We know that Fred is no gamble – heʼs hardworking, dedicated, and smart, and has been fantastic for us,” Raptors President Masai Ujiri said on Friday morning. “Weʼre thrilled heʼll be a big part of the Toronto Raptors for seasons to come.”
After entering restricted free agency, the Raptors made quick work in re-signing a key piece of the team’s future. VanVleet was the driving force of the team’s starting unit, concluding his sophomore campaign as a finalist for the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year award.
Helping the Raptors reach their best regular season mark in franchise history, VanVleet’s development was somewhat of a revelation for the Toronto-based organization an a sign of how valuable their 905 developmental grounds in Mississauga truly are. The Wichita State alum 8.6-points per game while shooting 41.4-percent from beyond the arc, but it was his efforts on both sides of the court that have turned the Raptors’ bench into a legitimate powerhouse.
“I don’t try to put limits on myself,” VanVleet told SLAM. “Before the season, when I didn’t even know how much I’d be playing, I still felt like that’s the type of impact I could have so I threw it down.”
Fast forward a year and VanVleet became the Raptors’ top offseason priority.
With VanVleet on the floor, the Raptors were ranked first in the league in offensive efficiency, sliding all the way down to fourth with Steady Freddy on the pine. The impact of VanVleet’s presence has earned him a new two-year, $18-million deal with the team that took a chance on the undersized yet gritty point guard.
Bet on yourself.