Luguentz Dort and Chris Boucher have become NBA staples. The Quebecers both signed new — and lucrative — deals with their respective teams, the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Toronto Raptors, Thursday night as the free agent market opened.
Updated yesterday at 21:35.
The bank collapsed in Oklahoma City. Luguentz Dort has reportedly agreed to a five-year, $87.5 million deal with The Thunder, his agent Thaddeus Foucher told ESPN. He will therefore rake in an average of 17.5 million per year by 2027, making him the highest-paid athlete from Quebec, all sports combined.
That’s quite an achievement for the 23-year-old Montreal native who was never drafted into the NBA…
Instead, Dort signed his first two-way deal with the Thunder within hours of the 2019 draft. Since then, he has gradually established himself as a mainstay of the team. That year he had 17.2 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game in 51 games until a season-ending left shoulder injury in February.
The Montreal native North went under the knife in March but should be back by the start of next season. traversed The press In the paddocks at Gilles-Villeneuve circuit during the Canadian Grand Prix two weeks ago, the athlete claimed to be “currently growing up in the NBA.” “Every year I get better,” he added.
We bet he’ll continue to evolve in the coming seasons if he’s one of the key elements in rebuilding Thunder.
Chris Boucher stays with the Raptors
For his part, Chris Boucher would have signed a new three-season, $35.25 million contract with the Raptors, which will bring him an average of $11.75 million a year. He thus benefits from an annual salary increase of around 5 million compared to his last contract.
At 29, Boucher has just completed his fourth season with the Toronto team. He had 9.4 points and 6.2 rebounds per game in 80 games this season.
Also from Montreal North, Boucher got his start in basketball late at age 18. Like there, he was never drafted. In 2017, after playing two seasons with the University of Oregon Ducks, the Golden State Warriors gave him a chance. He played a few games with their Farm Club in Santa Cruz and was part of the squad that won the 2018 NBA title.
The following year he found himself in the Raptors organization where things are going pretty well. His best season in the NBA came in 2020-21, averaging 13.6 points and 6.7 rebounds per game in 60 appearances.
Some good news
There is a lot of good news for Quebec basketball these days. Just under a week ago, Bennedict Mathurin became the highest drafted Quebecer in NBA history. Indiana Pacers made it to 6th placee Total picks from the drafting session.
Last summer, both Boucher and Dort received the National Assembly Medal in front of young people from the Montreal-North borough. ” I represent [le quartier] complete, Dort had pointed out. We often hear bad things about Montreal North, but there’s plenty of talent. »
Boucher had met a few days later The press between the walls of the École de technologie supérieure, during their back-to-school basketball camp for boys and girls aged 8 to 16. He said he wants to be a role model for young basketball players in the city.
” I say [aux jeunes] be fearless, not to be afraid, to have a lot of faith in them. You come from Montreal, where we will doubt a lot, we will say that you cannot make it, but you need a lot of confidence and hard work. I’ve had to work a lot harder than the normal people that are in the NBA just because I’m from Montreal and there really aren’t any opportunities like that. »
With Boucher, Dort, Khem Birch and now Mathurin, the path is opening up for young Quebecers who aspire to one day play in the NBA.