Toronto Maple Leafs: Former players still being paid by Toronto teams

Phil Kessel of the Toronto Maple Leafs (Photo by Abelimages/Getty Images)
Phil Kessel of the Toronto Maple Leafs (Photo by Abelimages/Getty Images) /
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Toronto Raptors
Justin Hamilton of the Brooklyn Nets NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

Toronto Raptors

The Toronto Raptors currently have three players in cap purgatory, with over $1.2 million tied up in loose ends. The grand majority of that money is going to one Justin Hamilton, who has never once suited up for the team.

A bruising defensive centre, Hamilton found a suitor in the Brooklyn Nets in 2016 after nondescript seasons in Charlotte, Miami and Minnesota. The Nets inked him to a multi-year deal before the 2016-2017 season, but lacklustre play left him on the chopping block come trade deadline time.

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Meanwhile in Toronto, the DeMarre Carroll experiment was yielding less than stellar results. So, the one time playoff foes brokered a deal, which saw Carroll and two draft picks make their way to Brooklyn for Hamilton.

The move allowed the Raptors to dump Carroll’s bloated salary, and Hamilton was waived the day after the trade was completed, never to play in the NBA again. Hamilton will still cash a cheque for a cool $1 million with a baby dinosaur on it in 2020, but his name will be off the books come 2021.

Another player with an interesting story who is still receiving money from the Raptors is Cameron Payne. Perhaps best known for being Russell Westbrook‘s dance partner during pregame warmups while the two were in Oklahoma City, he signed as a free agent with the Raptors after their championship victory in July of 2019.

Payne was waived prior to this COVID-19-shortened campaign. However, he will still be collecting a cheque for $150,000 from the team; peanuts compared to what is due to Hamilton, but still nothing to scoff at.

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The only other non-contributing player on the Raptors’ books is Isaiah Taylor, who was brought in on September 19, 2019 and shown the door on October 22, 2019. He will collect $50,000 from MLSE for his troubles.