By Tommy Matthews

The 6-feet-tall Fred VanVleet, who enters the offseason with a $22.82 million player option of his own, is expected to opt out of his deal with the Raptors to become a unrestricted free agent this summer.

In one of the weaker free agent classes in recent memory, VanVleet projects to be one of the top talents available and arguably the best free agent guard given his age and skill set.

His 2022-23 stats were impressive:

19.3 PPG, 4.1 RPG and 7.2 APG.

After a disappointing 41-41 season that resulted in them missing the playoffs, the Raptors enter this offseason knowing that change is on the horizon. There are no indications yet as to what Masai Ujiri and Toronto’s front office have planned in terms of making another championship-like push or going through some kind of rebuild or retool process, but VanVleet is currently in the prime of his career and ready to capitalize on his value.

VanVleet has proven to be one of the better playmakers and facilitators in the league, and he already won a title in Toronto in 2019. The Sixers have been looking to add championship-level talents to their roster, and sources say the Raptors guard is high atop the team’s target list should Harden leave Philadelphia this offseason. Leaving Toronto for Philadelphia is not that crazy of a scenario for the 29-year-old guard.

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