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Sports News

VanVleet: 'Time to cash out' in free agency

With NBA free agency set to begin next week, coveted guard Fred VanVleet has his eyes set on breaking the bank.

FILE PHOTO: Sep 7, 2020; Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA; Toronto Raptors guard Fred VanVleet (23) dribbles the ball against the Boston Celtics during the first half of game five of the second round in the 2020 NBA Playoffs at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

“I’m trying to get paid, man,” VanVleet said in an appearance on JJ Redick’s “The Old Man and the Three” podcast. “I’m not shy about that.”

VanVleet, 26, hits the market with an impressive resume built over four seasons with the Toronto Raptors. The undrafted guard has emerged over the last two seasons, finishing this summer with career highs of 17.6 points, 6.6 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 1.9 steals per game in 54 contests.

VanVleet particularly turned it on in the playoffs, leading the Raptors with an average of 19.6 points over 11 games before they were eliminated by the Boston Celtics in Game 7 of the second round.

“I don’t have to tell people that I value winning,” said VanVleet, a key bench player during Toronto’s 2019 championship run. “I’ve never been on a losing team in my entire life. ... I won a championship, and now it’s time to cash out.

“I’m only four years in, but I feel like I’m on the verge of blossoming even more, with more of a lead role and taking more responsibility in my game.”

VanVleet added during the interview that he feels he doesn’t have anything left to prove in Toronto.

“I’m going to look at all the offers on the table,” he said. “I know how I feel like I’m worth, and I’ll see if their minds are in the same place as me. If not, then we’ll take the best deal on the table.”

NBA free agency will begin Nov. 20.

--Field Level Media

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