Written by Compose.ly Staff
In the NBA, teams choose to go in on their best players or acquire talent from other teams in hopes of securing a championship. This usually requires them to lay out big bucks. For example, in July 2022, Denver Nuggets star Nikola Jokic received the largest contract extension in NBA history at $264 million over five years.
So which players have the Toronto Raptors deemed worthy enough to open their wallets for? From free agency to contract extensions, here are five of the largest contracts in Raptors history.
5. OG Anunoby, F, four years, $72 million
Anunoby was a first-round draft pick of the Raptors. He entered the draft in 2017 despite a knee injury that derailed his sophomore season at the University of Indiana. The Raptors rolled the dice that he would recover from the ailment and the gamble paid off.
Anunoby has improved each year he's been in the NBA and was rewarded with a four-year, $72-million contract extension in 2020.
4. Fred VanVleet, G, four years, $85 million
A member of the 2018-19 championship team, Fred VanVleet averaged 14 points per game during the Finals, including 22 in Toronto’s series-clinching Game 6 win. VanVleet signed a four-year contract worth $85 million in 2020.
VanVleet isn’t just popular on the court, he's a fan favourite. His signature catchphrase is “Bet on yourself,” which speaks to his basketball journey that saw the undersized guard go from undrafted prospect to NBA All-Star.
3. Kyle Lowry, G, three years, $100 million
In 2017, when point guard Kyle Lowry was poised to make big money as a free agent, the Raptors signed him to a three-year, $100-million deal. That gamble paid off as Lowry averaged 17 points per game during the 2019 NBA Finals, helping the Raptors secure the championship.
2. Pascal Siakam, F, four years, $137 million
Pascal Siakam was born and raised in Cameroon, where he learned to play basketball before ending up at New Mexico State University. In 2016, the Raptors selected him in the first round of the NBA draft. In his rookie year, he averaged only 4.2 points per game, but he quickly elevated his game, scoring nearly 17 points per contest in the 2018-19 season.
In 2019, he signed a four-year contract worth nearly $137 million. Siakam continued to produce, notching 22.8 points per game in 2021-22, and taking another step forward in the 2022-23 season.
1. DeMar DeRozan, G, five years, $145 million
In 2016, shooting guard DeMar DeRozan signed a five-year deal with the Raptors for $145 million. DeRozan started his professional career with the Raptors in 2009 and earned recognition as one of the top scorers in the league.
The team went all in to keep him after he opted out of his contract to try his luck with free agency in 2016. However, two years later, the Raptors traded DeRozan to the San Antonio Spurs in a deal that brought them Kawhi Leonard, who helped lead the team to its first-ever NBA championship.
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