Landry Fields to Raptors: Versatile Guard Would Give Toronto Talented Young Core

Austin GreenCorrespondent IJuly 3, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 21:  Landry Fields #2 of the New York Knicks in action against the New Jersey Nets during their pre season game  at Madison Square Garden on December 21, 2011 in New York City.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.
Al Bello/Getty Images

After years of being stuck in NBA purgatory, the Toronto Raptors are cooking up something special north of the American border.

According to ESPN's Marc Stein, the Raptors have agreed to a three-year contract with restricted free agent Landry Fields. The deal is reported to be around $20 million.

Fields—and every other NBA free agent—cannot sign a contract until July 11, and when he does finally put pen to paper, the Knicks will have three days to match Toronto's offer. However, it may be tough for them to retain Fields, as the Raptors have backloaded the deal, cleverly including a spike in the third year.

Assuming the Knicks cannot afford to match the offer, the Raptors will have a promising young core moving forward.

Fields' numbers aren't overly impressive, but he's one of the most versatile guards in the league. He's the perfect glue guy for a young team like the Raptors, and is capable of filling just about any role on the perimeter. At 6'7", Fields can defend multiple positions and is a good passer, a strong rebounder and an efficient scorer.

He certainly isn't the sexiest acquisition, but he gives the Raptors a very intriguing roster.

Andrea Bargnani finally figured everything out last season, DeMar DeRozan is quietly becoming one of the best shooting guards in the league, rookies Terrence Ross and Quincy Acy are promising and highly skilled big man Jonas Valanciunas will be coming over from Europe this season.

Throw in the fact that Steve Nash may be joining the Raptors (h/t Sam Amick, Sports Illustrated), and Toronto suddenly looks like one of the most exciting teams in the league.