The Toronto Raptors are closer to filling out their training camp roster less than two weeks from Media Day, adding an 18th player to the mix on Tuesday.
The Raptors are signing Kyle Collinsworth to a partially guaranteed deal, according to a report from Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
That partial guarantee is likely as part of an Exhibit 10 contract, as the Raptors are well into the luxury tax and don’t have a clear path to a roster spot for yet another guard in camp. An Exhibit 10 deal would allow Collinsworth to compete for a roster spot and, failing that, give the team the option to convert his deal to a two-way contract or, if he’s waived and agrees to join Raptors 905 in the G League as an affiliate player, would see him earn a $50,000 bonus to supplement the G League salary. Kay Felder and Chris Boucher are also in camp on Exhibit 10 deals.
UPDATE: Collinsworth’s deal is indeed an Exhibit 10, Raptors Republic has learned.
Here’s how the roster stands at present, assuming Collinsworth is on an Ex. 10:
Guaranteed NBA contracts: 13 (Lowry, VanVleet, Wright, Green, Powell, Richardson, Leonard, Miles, Anunoby, Siakam, Valanciunas, Ibaka, Monroe)
Partially guaranteed NBA contracts: 1 (Brown)
Exhibit 10 contracts: 3 (Collinsworth, Boucher, Felder; can have up to 6)
Two-way contracts: 1 (Loyd; can have up to 2)
Total roster spots: 18 (can have up to 20)
That’s very deep on guards already, and “Big Russia” further adds to that. Despite standing 6-foot-6, Collinsworth is a point guard by trade, having averaged 7.4 assists per-game in his final college season at Brigham Young back in 2015-16. That was technically his sixth year there, as he redshirted two seasons on a religious mission to Russia (hence the nickname). That left him on the older end entering the 2016 draft, and he subsequently went undrafted before spending his first pro season in the G League.
The Dallas Mavericks liked what they saw from him enough in their Texas Legends program that they signed him to a two-way contract for 2016-17, eventually waiving him and then signing him to a pair of 10-day contracts and then a rest-of-season deal. All told, Collinsworth got into 32 games for Dallas, averaging 3.2 points, 3.3 rebounds, 1.8 assists, and 0.5 steals in 15 minutes. Across his two seasons with the Legends, he’s averaged 8.1 points, 7.6 rebounds, 4.4 assists, and 1.8 steals while posting a true-shooting percentage of exactly 50.
There’s a lot to like and a fair amount to question in that profile. The big concern is that even here at age 26, Collinsworth still hasn’t shown he can shoot the three with any regularity, a near-necessity for modern guards. He hit just 30.1 percent of his G League threes and went 4-of-17 at the NBA level, and he didn’t flash that addition to his game in Summer League, either. It’s hard to be a productive lead guard without at least the threat of a 3-point shot, and the Raptors and 905 both figure to run a lot of dual-guard looks that will require him to play off the ball. At the same time, Collinsworth checks off a lot of other boxes, namely with terrific size for the position. He’s an elite rebounder for a guard, uses his length well to disrupt passing lanes and occasionally provide blocks in recovery (specifically with Delon Wright-style rear-view blocks), and is a solid playmaker with the ball in his hands thanks to his ability to see over a defense. He’s probably not an NBA rotation player without a step forward in his shooting ability, but a strong passer who can slide over as far as small forward on defense is a player worth getting a look at, even if it’s with the 905.
Looking at the roster, it’s clear the Raptors are putting a heavy emphasis on guard depth throughout the organization. They have four guards under NBA deals, Jordan Loyd on a two-way deal, and now Collinsworth and Felder on Exhibit 10s. One would think the final two camp spots would go to wings or bigs from here, and unless the Raptors plan to unexpectedly carry a 15th player and spend even deeper into the tax, there could be heavy competition for that second open two-way roster spot and the near $400,000 a player can make in that role this year.