The Toronto Raptors season ended disappointingly on Wednesday night. Despite holding a 19-point lead at one point in the contest, the Raptors lost by a final score of 109-105 after the Bulls outscored them 62-47 in the second half. Raptors guard Fred VanVleet finished with 26 points — on 7-for-13 shooting from behind the three-point arc — 12 assists, and eight rebounds, while Zach LaVine led the way for the Bulls with 39 points.
But in spite of the ugly ending to Toronto's season, the soon-to-be free agent VanVleet recently indicated to the media that he's open to remaining in Toronto long-term, per a tweet from Sportsnet's Michael Grange:
“My whole NBA life is here.”
Fred VanVleet, 28, has spent seven years in the NBA, all as a member of the Raptors franchise. He averaged 19.3 points, 4.1 rebounds, 7.2 assists, 1.8 steals, 0.6 blocks, and 2.0 turnovers per game across 69 appearances this season (all starts).
The former Wichita State star struggled to score the ball efficiently during the 2022-23 campaign — VanVleet shot just 39.3% from the field and 34.2% (a career low) from behind the three-point arc.
The Toronto Raptors have a lot of important decisions to make this offseason. Will they fire head coach Nick Nurse, who has had limited playoff success since coaching the team to a title in 2019? Will they trade one or more of OG Anunoby and Pascal Siakam? Only time will tell, but whatever decisions the Raptors' front office will make and no matter what the roster will look like, VanVleet seems all for the idea of staying a Toronto Raptor beyond this summer.