The Toronto Raptors ultimately got their guy, re-signing guard Kyle Lowry to a four-year contract worth $48 million early in the offseason.
However, after Lowry’s agent Andy Miller met with the Miami Heat, Raptors coach Dwyane Casey feared Lowry would spurn his team and head to South Beach.
From Jared Zwerling of Bleacher Report:
Over the next day, Miller spoke with the Heat and Lakers, but there were more questions than answers. In the Heat’s case, what would happen with James? Also, the terms Miami spoke of were in the same financial ballpark as Lowry’s current contract at the time. Still, Casey was nervous.
“The team I was worried about was Miami because they’re probably the closest team to winning a championship again,” Casey said. “We’re not quite there yet. We kind of outgrew ourselves last year, but we’re still a growing team, a young team.”
As Pat Riley mentioned on Wednesday, he spoke to free agents with the belief that LeBron James was returning to the Heat, so it’s understandable why Casey was nervous, despite Miami’s financial limitations.
Instead, both James and Lowry didn’t sign with the Heat. In what could have been an offseason in which Miami put together a Big Four, they will leave it with just a Big Two in Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.
Lowry, on other hand, heads back to a Raptors team that’s on the rise, fresh off a No. 3 seed in last year’s Eastern Conference playoffs.
Lowry averaged 17.9 points and 7.4 assists this past season.