The Toronto Raptors are reportedly in the midst of finalizing a four-year, $40 million contract extension with fourth-year swingman DeMar DeRozan, according to a tweet Wednesday evening from Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. Per NBA policy, the deadline for players from the 2009 Draft class was Wednesday at 5 p.m. If the deadline passes without a deal in place, the player would likely become a restricted free agent July 2013.
DeRozan, 23, was paid $3.3 million last season, so the contract, if finalized, would be a nod of confidence from the Raptors for the young guard-forward as he readies for his fourth NBA season. The news comes hours before the Raptors kick off their season Wednesday evening at home against the Indiana Pacers.
DeRozan averaged 16.7 points on 42 percent shooting in 63 games last season for the Raptors. Despite the projected pay raise, DeRozan will now have to compete for playing time with newly acquired Landry Fields from the New York Knicks, Linas Kleiza and rookie Terrence Ross.
Other notable players from his '09 Draft class that signed a contract immediately before the deadline are Ty Lawson of the Denver Nuggets, who agreed to a 4-year contract worth $48 million, James Harden, the newest member of the Houston Rockets, who inked a 5-year deal worth $80 million and guard Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors, who signed a 4-year deal worth $44 million.