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Toronto Raptors Sign Two Ahead of Training Camp

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Toronto Raptors Head Coach Nick Nurse has strengthened his side’s hand ahead of the NBA preseason by signing two players.

The Raptors have signed guard/forward Svi Mykhailiuk to a multi-year contract and added forward Reggie Perry as they look to the new season, which gets underway against Washington Wizards on October 21.

Mykhailiuk stands at six-foot-eight and spent last season with Detroit Pistons and Oklahoma City Thunder, where he averaged 8.5 points, 2.5 rebounds in 66 games. Born in Cherkasy, Ukraine, he came to the US in 2018 when he was 47th overall pick in the 2018 draft by the Lakers. He signed a three-year rookie deal worth $4.6m but was traded to the Pistons in February 2019.

He only switched to Thunder in March but ended the season having shot .411 (208-506) from the field and .334 (105-314) from three-point range. He is certainly a good addition to the Raptors group, which is now finalized ahead of preseason next week.

Their second capture this week was that of Reggie Perry, the 21-year-old Mississippi State alumni. He was drafted 57th in the 2020 draft by the Clippers but was traded with the Nets on November 19. Shortly after, his contract was converted to a two-way deal, meaning he split his time between the NBA and their NBA G League affiliate, the Long Island Nets.

He played 26 games in his rookie season, posting an average of 3.0 points, 2.8 rebounds and 8.1 minutes. He becomes the 20th and final camp invite for the Raptors, signing an exhibit ten contract, a non-guaranteed deal with the option to keep or convert. He will be hard pushed to claim a roster spot with competition from Freddie Gillespie, Yuta Watanabe, Sam Dekker, Ishmail Wainright and Isaac Bonga, all of whom are also six-foot-nine, like Perry. There is a chance he could sign for Toronto’s G team, the Raptors 905, which would earn him a small bonus. It is now up to Perry to showcase his talents and earn a roster spot, or stick around long enough to join the 905s.

The Raptors have been in steady decline since their 2019 NBA triumph, with Forbes reporting they were one of the two worst teams at the start of 2021. Things are not expected to get better this season either; they’re rank outsiders for the Eastern Conference in the latest betting odds with Ladbrokes, behind the likes of the Pacers and Hornets. Even with Mykhailiuk on board and Perry knocking on the door, it could be a long, hard season for Nurse’s side, just two short years on from their triumph in 2019, which made them the toast of Canada. However, they’re taking a different path this season, prioritizing the development of young players, such as Perry. Bobby Webster, the team’s General Manager, said it was a case of “philosophically, going young became a more desirable path.” Whilst it may bring long-term rewards, it could mean a tough season of consolidation.

At least they will have a full capacity stadium to perform in, as they are set to have the Scotiabank Arena full once again. They are awaiting official clearance from the province, but they expect fans to cheer on Mykhailiuk and the rest of the team for their first NBA game against the Celtics on October 23. Before that, they will play two preseason games at home, with the Celtics and 76ers the opposition, on October 8 and 10, respectively.

Anthony DiMoro is the creator of Sports Rants and the CEO of Elite Rank Media. He is a former Contributor for Forbes and the Huffington Post where he covered sports, social media, and SEO. Anthony formerly hosted the 'Forbes SportsMoney Podcast'.

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