The Toronto Raptors are rewarding franchise icon Kyle Lowry with a one-year, $31 million extension, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Raptors president Masai Ujiri alluded to working out a deal with Lowry during Raptors media day, stating how the point guard deserves “legacy status” for his contributions over the years. The contract has historical significance as well, as it makes Lowry the first player older than 33 to receive an extension that includes a first-year salary-cap hit north of $30 million, per Wojnarowski.
Mark Bartelstein, Lowry’s agent, praised how the Raptors went about locking up his client, applauding them for how they’ve treated one of the greatest players in team history.
"We are so appreciative of how Masai and Bobby [Webster] handled every aspect of this negotiation," Bartelstein told Wojnarowski. "Once again, they displayed how they look after their players in a first-class manner, especially someone like Kyle, who they recognize has such a legacy with the franchise."
The five-time all-star is coming off a season in which he averaged 14.2 points, 8.7 assists and 4.8 rebounds per game. He was instrumental in the Raptors’ 2019 championship run, highlighted by a heroic performance in Game 6 of the NBA Finals that brought the Larry OB north of the border for the first time.
Lowry’s contract was set to expire after the 2019-20 season, during which he’ll make $33.3 million. With that big money now coming off the books in the summer of 2021, the Raptors are well-positioned to make a run at some of the big-name free agents in that class, headlined by Giannis Antetokounmpo.
With a key piece locked up for another year, the Raptors can now shift their focus to working out a deal with reigning Most Improved Player Pascal Siakam, who is reportedly seeking a max contract.
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