The Toronto Raptors have made a move to bolster their frontcourt rotation.
The team announced it has signed Freddie Gillespie, a 6-foot-9 forward that most recently played with the Memphis Hustle in the NBA G League Bubble this season, to a 10-day contract. The 23-year-old will first be available to suit up for Saturday's contest against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Who is Freddie Gillespie? Get to know Toronto's latest reported signing…
Gillespie was born on June 14, 1997, and grew up in Woodbury, MN. Initially a football player, Gillespie did not begin playing basketball until eighth grade.
He began ninth grade at East Ridge High School in Woodbury, MN, where he stood as a 5-foot-11 freshman. A raw talent, Gillespie failed to make the junior varsity team as a sophomore and, as a junior, suffered a torn ACL that would keep him off the floor for the entirety of the year.
As a 6-foot-7 senior, Gillespie finally became a mainstay on East Ridge's varsity team but received very little interest from college programs, eventually deciding to attend Division III Carleton College in Northfield, MN due to its academics.
After not receiving much playing time during his freshman season, Gillespie broke into Carleton's rotation as a sophomore, displaying the prowess and potential that would eventually allow him to reach new heights.
As a sophomore, Gillespie broke out in a sense, posting averages of 10.0 points, 8.3 rebounds and 2.6 blocks over 27 games (23 starts). Following his sophomore season, Gillespie set a goal to play at a higher level, opting to transfer to Division I Baylor University, where he would begin his career as a walk-on.
Per NCAA transfer rules, Gillespie redshirted in his first year at Baylor but, through the development he showed there, earned a scholarship from head coach Scott Drew.
As a redshirt junior, Gillespie appeared in 26 games (11 starts), averaging 5.3 points and 4.4 rebounds while playing in just over 18 minutes per game. He became a full-time starter in his redshirt senior year, upping his averages to 9.6 points and 9.0 rebounds over 30 games for a Baylor team that went 26-4 and was considered to be a favourite to win the NCAA title before the NCAA Tournament was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the process, Gillespie earned Second Team All-Big-12, All-Big-12 Defensive Team and Big 12 Most Improved Player honours as a senior.
NBA and G League Career
Gillespie, who went undrafted in the 2020 NBA Draft, signed a training camp deal with the Dallas Mavericks in December of 2020 but after appearing in one preseason game, was waived ahead of the 2020-21 NBA season.
Weeks after being waived by the Mavericks, Gillespie was selected with the second overall pick of the G League Draft by the Hustle, the affiliate of the NBA's Memphis Grizzlies.
At the 2020-21 NBA G League Bubble, which was held at the Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, FL, Gillespie again displayed his prowess as a scorer, rebounder and defender. Appearing in all 15 games (all starts), the 23-year-old posted averages of 10.5 points, 10.3 rebounds and 2.3 blocks while appearing in just under 28 minutes per contest.
watch ya self when @freddieg_33 is around 👀- NBA G League (@nbagleague) March 21, 2021
he lead the league with 34 total blocks this season. watch some of his best ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/JKnK6mlcJ2
He is set to join a Raptors team that was outrebounded by an average margin of 11.5 in the month of March.
The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA or its clubs.