Raptors’ Masai Ujiri gets emotional, fights tears when asked about Kyle Lowry, Nick Nurse
With the Toronto Raptors’ season over and done, the attention of the franchise now shifts to team president Masai Ujiri. More specifically on whether he would stay with the Raps or pack his bags somewhere else. There are also other top priorities in the offseason for the Raptors, like deciding on what to do with Kyle Lowry.
But for now, the Raptors executive appears to be the talk of the town north of the border. At the moment, there’s no conclusive sign out there pointing to whichever way he’s going to go. But if you’re in the mood to make guesses based on actions, then you could probably make anything out of Ujiri’s emotionally charged back-and-forth with Michael Grange of Rogers Sportsnet:
“I love them like they are my family” – Masai Ujiri when asked about praise offered made by Lowry, VanVleet and Nurse in recent days. Got very emotional when speaking about them.
— Michael Grange (@michaelgrange) May 19, 2021
Here’s another descriptive account from Tim Bontemps of ESPN:
Masai Ujiri is getting choked up after being asked by @michaelgrange about the praise he's received from Nick Nurse, Kyle Lowry, Fred VanVleet and others in recent days. "These guys are incredible … I love them like they're my family."
— Tim Bontemps (@TimBontemps) May 19, 2021
What doesn’t need guessing is Masai Ujiri’s connection with Raptors players like Lowry, Fred VanVleet, and head coach Nick Nurse. All these personalities played a key role in elevating each other to the top of the NBA world when they won the world championship in 2019 by upsetting the Golden State Warriors.
Ujiri first landed in Toronto in 2013, when he signed a five-year deal with the team worth $15 million for an executive role. Since then, the Raptors managed to appear in seven consecutive playoffs. That run ended this year, as the Raptors came up short with a ghastly 27-45 record, the franchise’s worst since going 23-43 in the 2012-12 NBA season.
Things should get interesting as the offseason gets deeper for the Raptors.