Pascal Siakam and the Toronto Raptors have agreed on a four-year, $130 million maximum contract extension. The deal was first reported by ESPN.
According to The Athletic ‘s Shams Charania, the extension does not include any player or team options.
The Raptors had until Oct. 21 to get a deal done, or risk having Siakam become a restricted free agent in the summer of 2020.
As a rookie in 2016, Siakam signed a four-year, $6 million contract and has earned about $4 million over his first three seasons. In 2019-20, Siakam will earn a base salary of $2,351,839 before the extension kicks in.
Siakam, 25, captured the league’s Most Improved Player Award last season after putting up 16.9 points, 6.9 rebounds and 3.1 assists on 54.9% shooting from the field and 36.9% from the three.
Siakam raised his game in the playoffs, averaging 19.0 points and 7.1 rebounds, as the Raptors captured their first title in franchise history by beating the Golden State Warriors in six games.
In Game 1 of the NBA Finals, Siakam showed how good he could become against the best competition in the league as he scored a playoff career-high 32 points in a 118-109 win.
In his second year in the league, Siakam was still trying to discover his game. He recorded averages of 7.3 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.0 assists on 50.8% shooting and 22% from beyond the arc.
In his rookie campaign, Siakam received multiple assignments to play in the NBA Development League, which is known now as the NBA G League. In 2017, Siakam was MVP of the G League Finals after helping Raptors 905 win that league’s title.
Siakam has come a long way from his roots growing up in the Central African country of Cameroon. As the youngest of four brothers, he originally wanted to become a Catholic priest until he was discovered at a basketball camp near his parents’ home.
As TSN reporter Josh Lewenberg tweeted out, Siakam wasn’t even playing basketball eight years ago and was a surprise 27th pick three years ago in the NBA draft.
Siakam played college basketball for the New Mexico State Aggies and was named the conference player of the year in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) in 2016.
The extension wasn’t a total surprise, but it was felt that Toronto might wait until the summer to sign Siakam when they would gain valuable cap-space flexibility.
Siakam will be expected to be an important piece of the rebuilding efforts in Toronto during the first year of the post-Kawhi Leonard championship run. But Siakam will have to improve his perimeter shooting and playmaking to make up for the absence of Leonard.
The Raptors roster now stands at 12 guaranteed players: Kyle Lowry, Fred VanVleet, OG Anunoby, Siakam, Marc Gasol, Serge Ibaka, Norma Powell, Terence Davis, Patrick McCaw, Stanley Johnson, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson and Matt Thomas.
Chris Boucher and Dewan Hernandez, whom the Raptors acquired in the NBA draft this year, are expected to make the team. Malcolm Miller and Isaiah Taylor are battling for the third open spot.
In the team’s final preseason tuneup, coach Nick Nurse started started Lowry, VanVleet, Anunoby, Siakam and Gasol. Nurse has made it clear that those five starters, in addition to Powell and Ibaka, are the only seven players who have locked down positions.
The Raptors open the regular season at home on Tuesday against the New Orleans Pelicans, who will be without injured rookie sensation Zion Williamson.