D.J. Wilson signed a second 10-day contract with the Toronto Raptors on Friday, and there is a good opportunity for him to stick around even longer.
The Raptors were in a position to re-sign Wilson to a hardship deal, due to Yuta Watanabe being in the NBA’s COVID health and safety protocols. In fairness though, the second contract was more than deserved for the player.
The 25-year-old made an impressive debut for the Raptors in Cleveland, with 15 points, eight rebounds, four assists and a career-best five steals in 34 minutes of action. He followed this up with another nine points and six rebounds, this time in just 13 minutes against the Philadelphia 76ers.
Wilson was also due to play against the Los Angeles Clippers last Friday. However, he himself had to enter the NBA’s COVID health and safety protocols.
The Mount Shasta, California native’s second contract covers five Raptors games, including Friday night’s completed contest versus the Utah Jazz. As per Luke Adams of Hoops Rumors, he will make $102,831, which will not count towards the team’s salary cap.
In truth, opportunities will not be as steadily available this time around for Wilson, with the Raptors now essentially back to full strength. In this respect, he only saw one minute of action during the 122-108 win over the Jazz.
However, as James Reeve has written about previously, the Raptors should consider keeping the power forward around after his second 10-day deal expires. As per Sports Illustrated‘s Aaron Rose, Fred VanVleet spoke recently about how Wilson has performed:
"“He’s been playing well so hopefully he can continue to,” VanVleet said. “It’s kind of like that shiny new toy thing where we got guys coming in that’s a breath of fresh air, show some flashes, maybe something that we don’t have and just having more bodies and more activity. But he’s played well in his stint so far and hopefully, we can use him going forward.”"
The Raptors’ roster situation and financial flexibility will understandably play a role, but Toronto is an environment where Wilson could thrive. Certainly, Nick Nurse is the type of coach who can help him.
It’s true the former Milwaukee Buck has yet to live up to his potential since being drafted 17th overall in 2017. Following Friday’s action, he has averaged just 4.4 points, 3.1 rebounds and 0.7 assists in 145 career games.
However, as has been clear during his short time in Southern Ontario, Wilson has the talent to succeed. As such, he is worth the risk and someone the Raptors should consider keeping around.
What is your opinion of Wilson? Do you believe he deserves the opportunity to stay with the Toronto Raptors after his second 10-day contract expires? Let us know in the comments section below.