Raptors’ rising star Pascal Siakam is seeking a maximum contract extension in discussions with the Raptors, league sources said; otherwise preparing for a 2020 free agency market that would have the restricted free agent as a top player available. Siakam is eligible for either a four-year, $130 million max deal, or a five-year, $170 million max. So far in the 2016 draft extension class, Ben Simmons and Jamal Murray have received five-year max extensions.
Josh Lewenberg: Quick note from this story: Siakam is eligible for a max extension of ~$170M/5 years (not $130M/4 yrs as originally written). Talks are ongoing, sources tell @TSN_Sports , and while nothing is imminent, both Siakam & the Raptors hope to get a deal done before the Oct. 21 deadline.
Josh Lewenberg: Siakam told me that he'll leave the extension talks to his reps, but adds: "I love Toronto. I love being here and I'm definitely hopeful we can get it done."
Eric Smith: Ujiri re: Siakam contract negotiations: "Whether it's this fall or this summer, he's definitely someone we're going to keep here..."
The Raptors have engaged in preliminary talks with Siakam’s representatives, according to sources, but there’s no indication that a deal is imminent. Siakam’s camp is surely looking for an extension at or close to his maximum of roughly $130 million over four years, as they should. For the Raptors, the benefit of signing Siakam to an extension would be to buy some goodwill with the player and make a very public statement – in the aftermath of losing Leonard – to both him and the fan base that he’s the future.
One former Eastern Conference general manager that spoke to HoopsHype believes Siakam has a strong case to earn a max extension this summer. “Siakam has a legit case for a max,” he said. “Would I give the max to any of the other players up for extensions? Hell no. I consider these factors: whether the player has an impact on winning, whether he is a great fit for our culture, whether he still has room for growth and whether he can be the best player on a championship-caliber team.”
A Western Conference coach agreed: “With Toronto in the situation that they’re in, no longer having Kawhi Leonard or Danny Green, Pascal Siakam may be a safe bet for them and they may want to give him a max extension to lock him up. I’ve been impressed with his development; he’s improved into a highly, highly serviceable player who’s very efficient and does a lot for that team. From the outside looking in, it seems like he’ll be able to continue his development too. He seems highly motivated and very grateful to be in the situation he’s in and he doesn’t take anything for granted.”
Another Western Conference executive agreed that he’s not worth the max, telling HoopsHype: “Out of Pascal Siakam, Jaylen Brown, Brandon Ingram and Buddy Hield, , I don’t think any of them will get the max or deserve the max. If I was running each team, I would force them to play it out. In some situations, keeping their cap holds is so much more beneficial. You should only extend if you get a below-market-value deal or if it’s a no-brainer extension.”
Toronto went 17-5 on the nights Leonard was load-managed but is unlikely to play on a 63-win pace for a full season with him playing alongside Paul George on the Clippers. But Lowry won’t slight the talent that remains, with OG Anunoby expected to rebound from a lost season and Pascal Siakam looking to build on winning the league’s Most Improved Player award. “He’s going to get paid,” Lowry said of Siakam. “Y’all see he did it last year. For a guy like that, you’ve just got to keep improving and keep going.”
January 22, 2021 | 9:39 pm EST Update
January 22, 2021 | 8:53 pm EST Update
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