Toronto Raptors surprised many with some news on Tuesday. The Raptors went out and signed Austin Daye who was a part of the trade that landed Rudy Gay to the Raptors. Daye was selected 15th overall by the Pistons and never really developed into what they had hoped in Detroit.
He listed as a forward, but primarily has played as an oversized and skinny 6 foot 11, 200 lbs soaking wet. In the Garfield cartoon the orange cat said that he was not fat he was just "under tall". Daye is the exact opposite he is not skinny he is just "over tall" I guess.
His stats, which you can check for yourself will not wow you in the slightest. What might stick out is his wildly inconsistent three point shooting. He is coming off his best season shooting it from long range (41.8%) split between Detroit and Memphis. He really struggled though with the Grizzlies shooting just (34.5%) after averaging a scorching hot (52.5%) with the Pistons. Adding to the puzzle the year prior he was a career worst (21%)
What is the appeal of Daye likely his size and length and the hope he can apply that on the defensive end of the floor. It is a theory anyway considering the Raptors are thinking about D first and offense second. Daye also could be a body that would allow the Raptors to consider playing some small ball with Gay playing at the four and Daye at the three.
What might be the bigger message in this signing is the lack of faith in Terrence Ross to play at the three. Ross very likely could start the season on the outside of the rotation looking in. This should be taken as a serious message to the Raptors second year player who's season and career highlight to this point is winning a slam dunk contest. He is rapidly heading towards having a career path like a former Raptor Fred Jones. I have heard the name Gerald Green kicked around too.
In any case this is a very cheap and reasonable deal at just 2 million dollars for 2 seasons. Josh Lewenberg of TSN 1050, and use to be on podcasts on this very website is reporting he has learned the 2nd year of this deal is not guaranteed. Which is almost like the one year deal the D.J Augustin is on which provides a lot of motivation to produce. That was something that was questioned about Daye in Detroit as well.
In the end it is a lot of talk about a move that is pretty minor in nature. If Daye continues to be an under achiever with just a body type that excites people the Raptors are not really any worse for it. Another low drama and low risk move for Masai Ujiri.
About the only drama this creates is the fact that this news broke around the time we eat around my household. This has happened far to often and I am reminded of that often.