The 2013 Afrobasket MVP Carlos Morais has received a non-guaranteed deal to try out for the Toronto Raptors at training camp in about two weeks from now according to Angolan sources.
Mariana Rodrigues of Desporto reported on an instagram photo posted by Morais that shows his name and picture on a MLSE identity card as a Raptors player.
Joe D’Almeida of Platina line confirmed the instagram picture and provided this quote from the player (translated from Portuguese).
“It depends only on me achieving this great goal. If all goes as hoped, the contract can be a reality, but it all depends on a few factors.”
Basically, if everything goes well, Morais believes he can get a contract with the Raptors.
Morais is a 6’4” 27-year-old shooting guard who plays professionally in Angola and has been the star of the Angolan National team for several years. He is primarily a three-point shooter and in his 7 games at the 2013 Afrobasket, he averaged 7.3 three-point attempts per game. At the tournament, he averaged 15.9 points and collected 4.6 rebounds per game. In the championship game versus Egypt he had 21 points and 8 rebounds while hitting 4 three-pointers as Angola won 57-40.
Raptors President and General Manager, Basketball Operations Masai Ujiri told Pawel Weszka of NBA.com about his trip to Africa this summer and how important developing the game in Africa is to him personally.
“It just continues to pile on, the unbelievable experiences that I have had on the continent while trying to help grow the game and give back,” Ujiri said. “I think we all continue to do everything we can to help grow the game in Africa.
“It’s going to be a phenomenal tournament. I think I’ve gone to every single Afrobasket since I played in 1997. It’s such a competitive tournament, it’s almost raw. It has bettered skill wise and it’s bettered technically. Overall I go watch every country and give every player an opportunity to see him live.”
Apparently Ujiri saw what he likes in Morais. Ujiri has been adding long range shooting to the Raptors this summer and Morais is another three-point specialist that continues that theme, plus he provides Ujiri a legitimate means to help grow the game in Africa. It will be interesting to see what this guard can do when he shows up at training camp.