The Raptors announced today that they have signed two more players, free agent guard Drew Crawford and centre Yanick Moreira, to contracts of unknown financial terms and length. Like the recent signings of Jarrod Uthoff and Fred VanVleet, it remains unclear if they’ll be on the actual Raps roster come opening day.
Both Crawford and Moreira played for the Raptors in last month’s Las Vegas Summer League. (You may recall that Moreira is the poor unfortunate who got tagged with that ridiculous Tyus Jones leg kick foul call.) Both must have also made an impression on GM Masai Ujiri if he’s ready to make a commitment (at least in part) to them now.
Crawford is a 6’5’’, 215 pound, 26-year-old guard who joins the team after having spent time with the Pelicans’ Summer League team and the Orlando Magic (back in 2014; though he didn’t play for them). He’s since been in the D-League with the Erie BayHawks and signed in Israel with Bnei Herzliya. He was also just about the head to the Philippine Basketball Association with Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, before pursuing the NBA again with the Raptors in Las Vegas. And just for fun I’ll note that he is the son of NBA referee Danny Crawford. Small world.
Moreira, meanwhile, is a 25-year-old centre listed at 6’11’’ and 220 pounds. He spent last season in Spain and France after two seasons with SMU. This is cool: Moreira averaged 17.8 points and 8.2 rebounds for his home country of Angola in the 2014 FIBA World Cup — including one monster game of 38 points and 15 rebounds (against Australia, no less). Let it not be said Masai isn’t looking out for Africa.
With the recent injury to Delon Wright, there is a chance that recent signee VanVleet has a shot to make the Raptors main squad as a third string point guard. This new pair of names, plus Uthoff, remain as players the Raptors organization likes having around. They’ll have a chance to make good on an NBA career, but if I was a betting man I wouldn’t put too much stock in them snagging that final roster spot.