After waiting it out as long as possible, the Denver Nuggets declined to match the offer sheet signed by restricted free agent Gary Forbes and the scoring wing player is now property of the Raptors.
Why the wait? Well it’s pretty typical with RFA offer sheets for a team to take the max time allowed before making a decision (three days with new CBA) and the Nuggets were probably keeping all options on the table with a roster rife with holes. Denver’s moves on Tuesday to land Rudy Fernandez and Corey Brewer from Dallas plus the re-signing of Nene possibly made not matching the Raptors offer a little easier to swallow.
The multi-year deal (reportedly two season guaranteed plus a team option for a third) would indicate a little longer-term interest from the Raptors in Forbes, who averaged 5.2 ppg in a little over 12 minutes per contest. Fans of Canada’s senior men’s team should remember him well, Forbes poured in 39 points for his native Panama in a 91-89 win at the FIBA Americas tournament this summer – a loss that eliminated Canada from Olympic competition in 2012.
The acquisition of the Forbes also likely rounds out the Raptors roster to start the season, barring a trade. How things look now (with starters largely based on last season, we’ll save that debate for later this week):
PG – Calderon/Bayless/Carter
SG – DeRozan/Barbosa/Bayless
SF – J.Johnson/Butler/Forbes*/Kleiza**
PF – Bargnani/Davis/A.Johnson
C – A.Johnson/Magloire/Gray/Alabi***
* I don’t discount Forbes vaulting up a spot (or possibly two) at SF, but extra days at training camp are going to feel like weeks in this compressed season and that’s reflected in the order here
** Still out for at least a month
*** The pecking order at centre could warrant an entry on its own
We’ll have more from Forbes later this afternoon, but in the meantime, here he is dropping 78 in a pro am game.