The Toronto Raptors are at an interesting stage in their life as a franchise.
Despite re-signing DeMar DeRozan to mega-bucks deal over the summer and coming within two victories of the NBA Finals, there is a sense that they are missing something to truly be a contender to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Kyle Lowry enters free agency next summer and has told The Vertical he plans to opt out of his current deal - no surprise given the huge jump in cap space.
The former Houston Rockets guard wants to sign a five-year deal of his own, much like his backcourt teammate, and with Toronto's fierce loyalty - they extended DeRozan's, Masai Ujiri's and Dwane Casey's stays in the Six - it would be no surprise to see Lowry stay north of the border.
DeRozan didn't even have a chance to speak to other teams and the point guard would like the same treatment. While he would prefer to remain in Canada, the two-time All-Star sounded a warning to the organisation that it wasn't an open and closed case.
“For me, I think that at 12:01 a.m. on July 1 – something should be close," he said. "If not, I’m open to seeing what else is out there.”