The Toronto Raptors believe they are facing a tough situation. Kyle Lowry will opt-out and hit the Free Agent market, however, it may be in the Raptors best interest to let him walk. Let’s eliminate the numbers here for a moment and talk reality. Lowly is an All-Star but what exactly has he done for the Raptors in terms of winning?
The regular season has been great but it’s the playoffs where Lowry has faltered. The Raptors have the talent, but Lowry is either injured or goes cold when he’s needed most. His backcourt mate, DeMar DeRozan and he are a good fit but something’s off at times. With Corey Joseph waiting in the wings to take over this may be the perfect time for the Raptors to say goodbye.
Lowry is 31 years old and he currently makes $12M per year. DeRozan, on the other hand, is 27 and makes $27M per. Lowry turned down the $12M offer because he believes he deserves more. For the 2016 season, Lowry averaged 22 points, 7 assists, and 1.5 steals. Joseph, 22, averaged 9 points and 3 assists in 25 minutes only make $7M per.
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What the Raptors will have to figure out is– what they want to do?
If their goal is to continue to hover around the 45-50 win mark then it’s wise to keep Lowry happy. If they want to challenge the Boston Celtics and the Cleveland Cavaliers– then let Lowry walk, give the job to the cheaper Joseph and spend that money someplace else. A quality Center is needed. Maybe the Raptors can swing a deal for Andre Drummond or see if the New Orleans Pelicans are willing to par ways with DeMarcus Cousins.
The Raptors will lose a weapon with the departure of Lowry but like the rest of their history in terms of star players leaving– they will recover.