It appears that Kyle Lowry's impending free agency no longer looms over the upcoming season for the Toronto Raptors.
According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, Lowry and the Raptors have reached an agreement on a one-year, $31 million contract extension that will keep him with the team through the 2020-21 NBA season.
Breaking: Kyle Lowry and the Toronto Raptors have agreed on a one-year, $31M contract extension that takes the five-time All-Star guard out of July's free agency market, agent Mark Bartelstein of @PrioritySports tells ESPN. https://t.co/nkhme9AHes- Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) October 7, 2019
Lowry, who was on the final year of a three-year deal he signed to remain with the Raptors in 2017, told reporters at this year's media day that "I'm not really worried about the free agency thing," adding that his representation had been in discussions with the team.
Per Wojnarowski's report, Lowry's agent, Mark Bartelstein, was more than pleased with how swiftly these negotiations were handled:
"We are so appreciative of how Masai and Bobby handled every aspect of this negotiation," Bartelstein told ESPN. "Once again, they displayed how they look after their players in a first-class manner, especially someone like Kyle who they recognize has such a legacy with the franchise."
After being traded to the Raptors in 2012, the 33-year-old Lowry is now entering his eighth season with the franchise and is the team's longest-tenured member. At media day, Raptors President Masai Ujiri added that Lowry's legacy status with the franchise would have an impact on these contract discussions:
"What he's done for this city, for this ball club, is remarkable. You all know: We're sitting here, there's many of you here, you all know when we sat down here six years ago, and we would never write this script, this way, in any form of dreams. And this is where it is. I'm proud of him for that."
In the 2018-19 season, Lowry appeared in 65 regular season games, posting averages of 14.2 points and a career-high 8.7 assists per game. In the postseason, Lowry appeared in all 24 of the Raptors games, averaging 15.0 points, 6.6 assists and 4.9 rebounds and put forth one of his best performances in Game 6 of the NBA Finals, scoring a team-high 26 points to go along with 10 assists as the Raptors would win the first NBA title in franchise history.
While the Raptors are set to take on the Houston Rockets in two preseason games as part of the 2019 NBA Japan Games, Lowry will not play as he continues to recover from offseason thumb surgery (per Ryan Wolstat, Toronto Sun).
Lowry did express that he is somewhat behind in his recovery and conditioning and while his status for the preseason remains uncertain, the Raptors are still weeks away from their opening day meeting with the New Orleans Pelicans on Oct. 23.
More to come.