Well, Colangelo stood by his word of wanting to get the coaching situation resolved by the end of May, signing Sam to a 3 year contract worth between $12-14 million. Should we care about the dollars? Nope. They don’t count against the salary cap, so for all I care, they could have given Sam a 3 year $30 million contract. I like the fact that it is a 3 year, which is pretty much the norm as a 4 year would have been a bit excessive.
Once it came out that Indiana wasn’t as hot on Mitchell as originally reported, it was all but a lock that something was going to get worked out between Mitchell and Toronto. Turns out that it wasn’t so much Indiana as Larry Bird not being completely sold on Mitchell and if a Hall of Famer steps up and says something like that, then it is usually in the best interest of your team to listen up.
So is Sam a good fit for Toronto? Sure. He has formed a certain amount of trust with his team and has gone through the good and the bad. He seems to be good with young players and doesn’t take any crap as we have seen him have to deal with some real characters in the past few years. Mitchell still has a lot of developing to do, but if you’re going to be doing that, then I guess it is good that he is doing it with a team that is still developing too.
The Raptors are clearly the best fit for Sam. They just make the most sense for him. It wouldn’t have made sense for him to go to somewhere like Indiana or Seattle, because those teams have all sorts of problems and it would be a situation where he would not only have to gain the trust of the players, but also implement a new system and take care of figuring out what his lineup would be. There would be too much work for him to do that he had already accomplished in Toronto. Those teams are also older than the Raptors and when you have a young team on the rise, it’s best for you to stay there with a nice contract. It just makes the most sense.
Now it will be interesting to see who Colangelo brings in to fill that swingman spot for Sam…stay tuned for some thoughts on that.