Pascal Siakam reacts to signing max contract extension with Raptors
The Toronto Raptors signed Pascal Siakam to a four-year, max contract extension, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. The 25-year-old forward shared some of his initial thoughts with reporters after inking his big deal.
Siakam says he is hoping this deal will serve as an inspiration to young athletes in Africa. However, he also noted that he wished his late father could have been there.
Siakam says he wishes his dad were here. He signed his extension two days before the anniversary of his dad’s death. Says the deal is a huge blessing for his family, and should be an inspiration to kids in Africa.
— (((Eric Koreen))) (@ekoreen) October 21, 2019
Siakam has established himself as an up-and-comer in the NBA, and most experts would agree that the Raptors made a wise choice in offering him an extension. He says he wasn’t worried about expectations, though. He knows he belongs in the league:
“The thing I was really worried about today was getting to the practice facility and signing the contract,” Siakam says about worrying about expectations created by contract. “There’s no pressure at all. … I deserve to be here.”
So… will Siakam be paying for dinner now that he’s inked a new deal? Perhaps, but he does still have one more year of his rookie contract to go.
Siakam: "After the congratulations, it was all 'Oh you're paying for all the dinners." Had to tell guys he's still on his rookie contract for a year. Apparently Fred is paying this year, Pascal after that.
— Blake Murphy (@BlakeMurphyODC) October 21, 2019
The Raptors claimed their first championship in franchise history last season. If they want to defend that crown, they’ll need solid production from Siakam. In his 80 appearances last regular season (79 starts), the former 27th overall pick racked up averages of 16.9 points on 54.9 percent shooting from the field (36.9 percent from beyond the arc), 6.9 rebounds, 3.1 assists and just under one steal (0.9) in 31.9 minutes per outing.
Siakam and the Raptors kick off their 2019-20 regular season campaign on Tuesday night with a matchup against the New Orleans Pelicans. Tip-off is set for 8:00 p.m. ET, with TNT having live broadcast coverage.