Raptors president Masai Ujiri said the team will try to retain their point guard during this coming free agency period, despite their success with him out of the lineup. According to a report in the Toronto Sun, the team is committed to keeping the 31-year-old point guard around in the future.
With the point guard out since the All-Star break after right wrist surgery, and with Toronto having surged in the past week, those musings about the Raptors without Lowry have resurfaced again, as they did last year when Cory Joseph had some strong early playoff games. So, what would the Raptors be without Lowry? Ujiri isn’t thinking about that.
“You have to remember that, everything that has happened to this team in the last few years, Kyle has been at the forefront of that,” he says. Will Ujiri try to bring him back in the offseason, when the 31-year-old becomes a free agent?
“No question,” he says. “Before the injury, you could argue he was one of the top five players in the league this season.”
Ujiri’s faith in Lowry is refreshing, especially because the team has played well in his absence. Despite that, the article makes a compelling case about Lowry’s value to the team. One anecdote involved Lowry’s handling of an injured player’s return to shooting form. Another pointed out how coach Dwane Casey often has to preface his postgame press conference with a statement about how well Lowry played because so much of the postgame conversation involves breaking down Lowry’s on-court heroics.
It’s clear the point guard has found success in Toronto, making big shots and emerging as a leader beloved by his teammates. Lowry has been outspoken at times, but Ujiri said the point guard is unquestionably the leader of the team.
We won’t know what Lowry wants until July and he’s expressed frustration about the team’s direction at times this season, but it’s clear that he’s wanted in Toronto.