The Toronto Raptors still have their Bi-Annual exception left and are $2.7 million below the luxury tax line. Raptors President and General Manager, Basketball Operations Masai Ujiri has used some of that space to pickup free agent forward Austin Daye according to Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski.
Austin Daye has reached agreement on two-year, $2 million deal with Toronto, league source tells Y! Sports.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 30, 2013
Daye was the 6”11” small forward that the Pistons drafted 15th overall in 2009 who reminded people of Tayshaun Prince, but he never quite lived up to expectations. His sophomore campaign with the Pistons showed promise as Daye played over 20 minutes per game and hit on over 40 percent of his three-point attempts. He even rebounded at a reasonable rate and grabbed half a steal and swatted half a block, but that was as good as it got for Daye. When the Pistons traded him to the Grizzlies last season, he was hitting three-pointers at a 54.5 percent clip, but his days were clearly numbered in Detroit and the Grizzlies did not make him a qualifying offer.
Still just 25-years-old, Daye is highly skilled, but probably best suited as a project player to try and develop on the back end of a roster. Ujiri has mentioned several times he likes building with young players and he would like to add more shooting. Daye qualifies on both counts.
The long lanky Daye plays more like a wing than a forward and that could be bad news for the Raptors Terrence Ross. Ross’ NBA ready skill was supposed to be shooting, but that hasn’t happened yet at the NBA level. Daye has two NBA seasons shooting above 40 percent from three-point range and if Daye comes ready to play, he could take whatever minutes the Raptors were thinking about giving to Ross and not give them back.
This is another solid low risk, potential high return move by Ujiri this summer as he tries to build a team for this season and beyond.
Stephen Brotherston covers the Toronto Raptors and visiting NBA teams at the Air Canada Centre. A member of the Professional Basketball Writers Association, Stephen is the editor and publisher of Pro Bball Report.
You can follow Stephen on twitter @stevesraptors