Lowry will opt out of contract, says he wants a ring and ‘nothing else’

Posted: 09/05/2017 in NBA, Sports
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Kyle Lowry made his inevitable offseason decision plain on Monday, telling reporters he’ll opt out of the final year of his contract with the Toronto Raptors.

“Honestly, I haven’t thought about the criteria. I haven’t thought too far ahead of any of that,” he said in his exit interview. “I will be opting out, and that’s as far as I’ve gotten.”

Lowry, whose player option is worth $12 million, stands to make more than $200 million if the Raptors re-sign him to a five-year maximum contract using his Bird rights. If he opts to exercise his free agency and sign elsewhere, a max deal could net him just over $150 million.

A report surfaced shortly after the Raptors were swept out of the playoffs by the Cleveland Cavaliers that Lowry would consider signing with a Western Conference team this summer, presumably to escape the vise-grip LeBron James has consolidated over the East – a grip Lowry doesn’t expect to be slackening any time soon. But the 31-year-old insists that, outside the decision to opt out, no options have even been considered as of yet.

“I haven’t thought about it. I wouldn’t BS you guys,” Lowry told the reporters toward whom he’s often been pugnacious and guarded. “Well, I would, but I’m not this time.”

When it does come time to make that decision, he made no bones about what will go into it, and what he’s looking for.

“A ring,” he said, without hesitation. “Nothing else. I just want a ring.”

“I think I can do it anywhere I play,” Lowry said when asked if he can achieve that lofty goal in Toronto, where he’s grown into the three-time All-Star he is today. “That’s just how confident I am. I’ve just gotta be better. I put a lot of pride and joy into how hard I work, so I know I’ve just gotta work harder. I’ve gotta do something different. I’ve gotta get better. I want to beat the best. And whatever it takes to beat the best, that’s what I’ve gotta do.”

Lowry wouldn’t say whether money will be a factor in his decision.

“I haven’t thought about any of that,” he said. “Honestly, what I’ve thought about is, yes, I’ll opt out, and how I need to get better as a basketball player. That’s all I’ve thought about. And that I want a ring. That’s all that drives me.”

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