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VanVleet stays with the Raptors; Hayward to the Hornets

Fred VanVleet bet on himself. It was worth it.

Gordon Hayward, meanwhile, is heading to a new home.

VanVleet agreed to a four-year, $ 85 million contract on Saturday to stay with the Toronto Raptors, a person with direct knowledge of the discussions told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the contract remains unsigned. The fourth year of the contract is at VanVleet’s option.

The Charlotte Hornets have loved Hayward for years. They finally got it on Saturday, according to Priority Sports, the agency that represents the veteran forward. A person with knowledge of the terms, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal had not been signed, told the AP that Hayward will sign a four-year contract worth $ 120 million. ESPN first reported on the Hayward-Hornets deal.

VanVleet, the undrafted point guard from the state of Wichita, has played a huge role in the recent successes of the Raptors, the biggest highlight of their run to the 2019 NBA championship. He has set career highs in scoring. By wide margins in each of the past three seasons, that number increased to 17.6 points per game last season.

Keeping VanVleet was of great importance to the Raptors, who have won at least 50 games in each of the past five seasons, the longest current streak in the NBA. Milwaukee is on a two-year streak and reigning NBA champion Los Angeles Lakers hit the 50-win mark last season.

He also fulfilled a VanVleet prophecy: He was famous for not being drafted four years ago, then went through some low-money deals that he thought wouldn’t turn into much.

“I rejected them. I bet on myself, ”VanVleet told friends and family on what would have been his draft night, a festive occasion that turned disappointing when the call from the NBA never came.

The Raptors signed him to a summer league contract, then a minimum contract, then gave him a two-year, $ 18 million deal two years later, and now they gave him the full reward.

Kyle Lowry, the veteran guard and longtime leader of the Raptors, has predicted that VanVleet will take on that role one day. The agreement agreed on Saturday only consolidates that kind of thinking.

“It’s going to be rewarded,” Lowry said after the Raptors were eliminated with a Game 7 loss to Boston in the Eastern Conference semifinals last season. “For me, that means that the world can take care of its family and take care of its family at a high level.”

That is no longer in doubt.

Free agency opened in the NBA on Friday night and VanVleet was one of the top names available. The Lakers’ Anthony Davis remains unsigned, although he is expected to remain with the defending champs, and Hayward’s future was another of the top questions left in the league as Day 2 of free agency began Saturday.

It wasn’t a question for long.

Hayward turned down a $ 34 million option for this season with Boston, and the Celtics were in talks with other teams, including Indiana, believed to be Hayward’s preference, about possible sign-and-trade deals.

Instead, it appears the Celtics are watching Hayward leave as a free agent.

Hayward agreed to a four-year offer worth approximately $ 63 million with the Hornets in 2014, a deal that was matched by the Utah Jazz, Hayward’s original team. Hayward left the Jazz for Boston in 2017, saw the end of his first season with the Celtics on the opening night of the 2017-18 season when he sustained a horrible lower leg injury, then averaged 14.0 points per game during the next two seasons.

The VanVleet deal was the second big advance for the Raptors in two days. On Friday, the team announced that it would begin this season by calling Tampa, Florida, home due to travel issues related to the coronavirus pandemic, specifically the challenge of getting NBA teams to a U.S.-Canadian border that It is closed to non-essential travel.

On other matters on Saturday:

ATLANTA

Guard Rajon Rondo took to Instagram to post what appeared to be a farewell message to the Lakers, after helping them win the NBA title last season. He thanked team headquarters and coach Frank Vogel, among others.

He ended the post with “Now what’s next …”

The answer came quickly.

Rondo later accepted a two-year contract with the Hawks on Saturday, a person with knowledge of the negotiations told the AP.

Rondo became the latest addition in two busy days of moving for Atlanta. The Hawks agreed with point guard Kris Dunn early Saturday to a two-year contract worth $ 10 million, a second person told AP. And Atlanta also agreed to a three-year contract with Danilo Gallinari on Friday.

DENVER

Paul Millsap will stay with the Nuggets on a one-year deal worth about $ 10 million, an insider told AP. News of the forward’s decision was first reported by . and The Denver Post.

MIAMI

The Heat agreed to a two-year deal starting at $ 5.9 million this season with top defensive guard Avery Bradley, agent Charles Briscoe said.

Bradley has averaged 11.8 points in his career. He spent last season with the Lakers but did not accompany them to the NBA reset bubble at Walt Disney World. He averaged 8.6 points in 49 games, mostly starts, for the Lakers last season.

The second year of that deal is at the Heat’s option, much like the deals they reached Friday with returnees Goran Dragic and Meyers Leonard. That protects Miami’s spending flexibility for the summer of 2021.

Moe Harkless, who was briefly, on paper, anyway, a member of the Heat in July 2019 before being transferred as part of the trade that brought Jimmy Butler to Miami, is now with the Heat and for real this time.

Harkless has agreed to a $ 3.6 million contract, a person with knowledge told AP. For now, the Heat intend to use their biennial exception to get Harkless, who averaged 5.6 points in 62 games last season with the Los Angeles Clippers and New York.

MILWAUKEE

Priority Sports announced that Bobby Portis, who averaged 10.1 points last season for New York, has agreed to a deal with the Bucks.

PHILADELPHIA

Dwight Howard became the first announced free agent contract this offseason, completing his one-year, $ 2.6 million deal. Signed on Saturday; players with certain types of contracts, such as the veteran minimum agreed to on Friday night, did not have to wait for the traditional signing period to begin on Sunday.

PHOENIX

Forward Jae Crowder, a big part of Miami’s run last season toward the NBA Finals, agreed to a three-year deal worth nearly $ 30 million to join the Phoenix Suns, according to a person familiar with those negotiations.

Crowder became a starter last season for the Heat and averaged 12.0 points in Miami’s playoff run. He becomes another key addition to the Suns, who finished last season with an 8-0 run in the reset bubble at Disney and traded earlier this month for All-Star point guard Chris Paul to play alongside guard All. -Star Devin. Booker.