Announced last night in Australia - since they are a day ahead - it took some time to make it here, but nonetheless it's now official: Nathan Jawai, formerly of the Cairns Taipans of the National Basketball League (NBL) in Australia, called the "Australian Shaq" Jawai has signed a 2 year deal with the Toronto Raptors.
There were many questions surrounding the 41st pick, whether he was bound for the D League (NBDL) or was off to play in Europe - however Bryan Colangelo has put his faith in the player he sent scouts to visit midseason last year. Once again Colangelo is trying out a project, and once again it has left people undecided about how to react. Just like Andrea Bargnani, this is another foreign player that is not well known at all in North American circles. And just like Jamario Moon, this is a player brought in with the expectations of filling out the bench, with the hopes of becoming a far bigger impact player in the end.
The 21 year-old, 6'10" Forward-Centre with a 7'5" wingspan certainly makes one salivate when thinking of the possibilities if he is another diamond in the rough, playing alongside Moon and Bargnani off the bench - the towering height and shot blocking may never stop for the Raps next season!
The bar is set low, but I think in reality it's quite high, for this young player.