The Toronto Raptors have re-signed their starting center.
Let's get it, @Khem_Birch! #WeTheNorth pic.twitter.com/rwzz3VxL1Z- Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) August 6, 2021
According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, the Raptors and Canadian center Khem Birch have agreed to a three-year, $20 million contract.
Free agent C Khem Birch is returning to the Toronto Raptors on a three-year, $20M contract, his agent Austin Brown of @caa_basketball tells ESPN.- Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) August 5, 2021
Birch spent the first three and a half seasons of his career with the Orlando Magic before being waived back in April of the 2020-21 season. With the Raptors' need for depth in the middle, and with Birch's ties to the Canadian National Team under head coach Nick Nurse, the match was seamless for the Montreal native to play for his home country's franchise.
Birch went on to have the most productive stretch of his career, averaging 11.9 points, 7.6 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.2 blocks over 19 games, all of which would mark career-highs over a full season's span. He started in 17 of those 19 games, recording three double-doubles while also notching career-bests in points (20), rebounds (14) and assists (6) in separate games.
The 28-year-old's return gives the Raptors some stability at the center position around the young and versatile roster they have formed this offseason. With Birch expected to return to his spot in the starting lineup, it will be intriguing to see what he is capable of for an entire season with the opportunity he received over the final portion of games last year.
While Birch won't be on the Summer League roster, you can catch the Raptors back in action on Sunday, Aug. 8 when they take on the New York Knicks at 4:30 p.m. ET to kick off their summer exhibition schedule.
The views on this page do not necessarily represent the views of the NBA or its clubs.