Raptors: Toronto brings back Fred VanVleet on four-year deal

Fred VanVleet got the huge deal he wanted with the Raptors

VanVleet was connected with several point guard openings, most notably the New York Knicks, as it was thought he’d finally want out of the shadow that is playing next to and sometime behind Kyle Lowry. Instead, VanVleet is sticking with the only pro team he’s known, re-signing with the Raptors on a four-year deal.

It’s not the max, but four years and $85 million is a solid amount to stay with a contender, rather than take his talents elsewhere for more money. VanVleet’s decision raises a good argument, as well — no championship-caliber team is going to give him that kind of money to be their go-to, All-Star talent. VanVleet is a very solid player for the Raptors, but he’s not the best player on a Title team.

VanVleet played a critical role on the Raptors championship team two years ago

While Toronto suffered an unusual playoff fate without Kawhi Leonard this season, they were still near the top of the Eastern Conference for much of the year. There’s no reason they can’t repeat that fate with VanVleet back in tow.

VanVleet was among the most improved players in the NBA this past season, as he average 17.6 points per game and nearly 7 assists every night out. Much of that can be attributed to his increase in minutes, and the fact that Nick Nurse’s offense emphasized him far more in 2019-20 than in his first three seasons.

The Raptors are banking on that continued improvement. Their player development system is arguably the best in the NBA. VanVleet is a testament to that, and now Toronto is keeping around their own as a result.