Fred VanVleet going back to Raptors, keeping young players together

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Fred VanVleet wanted a team to show him the money this offseason and the Toronto Raptors stepped up.

The Raptors and VanVleet agreed to a four-year, $85 million deal that includes a player option, his agent, Brian Jungries of Parlay Sports and Entertainment, told The Athletic on Saturday.

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The reported signing ensures that VanVleet will be a part of the Raptors core for a few more years alongside Kyle Lowry, Pascal Siakam and OG Anunoby.

VanVleet, who came to Toronto as an undrafted free agent, made his intentions this offseason clear in an interview on J.J. Redick’s podcast “The Old Man and the Three” earlier this month.

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“I’m trying to get paid, man,” he said. “I’m not shy about that. I don’t have to tell people that I value winning. Like, just look at my story, do your research. I’ve never been on a losing team in my entire life.  … I won a championship and now it’s time to cash out. I’m 26. … I’m only four years in (to his NBA career) but I feel like I’m on the verge of blossoming even more, with more of a lead role.”

VanVleet played four seasons with the Raptors and helped the team win a championship in 2019. Last season was his best yet.

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He averaged 17.6 points, 3.8 rebounds and 6.6 assists per game in 54 games. The Raptors made it to the Eastern Conference semifinals before losing to the Boston Celtics.



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