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Report: Raptors’ Pascal Siakam seeking max-level extension

Pascal Siakam, Raptors

Toronto Raptors forward Pascal Siakam is seeking a maximum contract extension on his rookie contract. Otherwise, Siakam is preparing to become a restricted free agent in a 2020 free-agency market that would peg him as one of the top players available, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.

Siakam is eligible for as large as a five-year, $170 million max, a figure only two members of the 2016 NBA Draft class have received: Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers and Jamal Murray of the Denver Nuggets.

The lanky forward could also net a four-year, $130 million extension, but if the Raptors pass on it, they could free up as much as $81.1 million in salary cap space. However the Raptors have found it tough to get free agents to sign with them in the offseason, making the development of their own talent and trades a more viable way to lure star players to The North.

Siakam is coming off a breakthrough season in which averaged 19.0 points, 7.9 rebounds and 3.4 assists in the team’s 21 games without Kawhi Leonard. The duo also ranked second all-time in points scored in the playoffs (1,187 points), tying them with Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen in 1992 and putting them a spot behind LeBron James and Dwyane Wade in 2012 (1,222).

The 6-foot-9 forward saw a breakthrough third year in the league, as he shot a career-high 54.9% from the field, 36.9% from deep, and 78.5% from the foul line — all coming with increased minutes as he quickly became a starter under new coach Nick Nurse.

Now with an NBA title and a Most Improved Player award in his bag, Siakam has all the right components to merit an extension this year.