Fred VanVleet is trying to secure the bag this offseason.
The Toronto Raptors have become one of the most consistent winners in the league over the last few seasons, and Fred VanVleet’s rise from unheralded point guard to an indispensable starter is a big reason why. The Raptors’ lynchpin might actually bolt the Great White North this offseason, as he is chasing a potentially massive payday elsewhere in the league.
On J.J. Redick “Old Man and the Three” podcast, VanVleet confirmed that he is finally eyeing that big payday after years of making comparative peanuts, telling Redick that he is “trying to get paid” this offseason.
Fred VanVleet is coming off of the best season of his career
VanVleet, a former undrafted free agent, averaged 17.6 points and 6.6 assists per game last season, which was by far his most productive season. VanVleet has one of the most unpredictable career arcs in recent NBA history. After clawing onto Toronto’s roster as a seldom-used bench player as a rookie, VanVleet became a trusted backup for Kyle Lowry in his second season, an integral part of a championship team that went nuts in the NBA Finals in his third year, and one of the better starting guards in the league in his fourth campaign.
While VanVleet made it clear he wants to get paid, he noted he has never played on a losing team in his career, which can be taken as him re-affirming his commitment to winning.
The Raptors might be in for a rough offseason, as they could lose several starters while watching teams like the Nets and Sixers in their division continue to improve. The Raptors will likely pull out all the stops in order to convince VanVleet to return to Canada, but those pleas are naught but ash if they can’t match competing financial offers.