August 6, 2021 by Speakers' Spotlight
Masai Ujiri Signs Multi-Year Deal with the Toronto Raptors
Masai Ujiri has overseen the most successful era in the history of the Toronto Raptors. After months of uncertainty, Masai confirmed this week that he is “here to stay”, signing a multi-year contract that will expand his role from president to vice-chairman.
In a video posted by the Team on Thursday, Masai said, “I’m grateful for the opportunity to lead this team. I love being the leader of the Toronto Raptors and I’m here to stay.”
Joining the team in 2013, Masai quickly became known for his bold decision-making, trading some of the team’s star and fan-favourite players, as well as firing a head coach fresh off a “coach of the year” win, within five years. These moves ended up creating a team that was now expected to make the playoffs, not just contend for them, and ultimately led to their first NBA championship in 2019.
Since their win, the Raptors have had a bit of a rocky road, having played their 2020-21 season through a pandemic with Florida being their home arena. But Masai has made it clear that he is staying to bring home another win.
“On the court, our goal is clear: Win. It’s simple: Win. Bring another championship to Toronto,” Masai said in the video. “We are united in that mission and nothing else will do. We will bring young talent to this city and continue to build with our unbelievable players. I’ve said it before, and I am saying it again: We will win in Toronto.”
The Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment chairman Larry Tanenbaum said in a press release “Great sportsmen impact their games. Great leaders impact their communities. Masai Ujiri does both, and we’re very pleased he is returning to the Raptors as vice-chairman and president.
Off the court, Masai will continue his work on the issue of child soldiers and peace, as well as advocating for equality and fair treatment of marginalized people in the justice system.
“To share a vision of what we believe can be possible, and understand the work we have to do to get there, is a huge reason I’m so glad to be back in Toronto,” Masai said. “I am very grateful for their confidence and their support.”
Read more about Masai’s work with the Toronto Raptors here, and watch the video essay below created in celebration of his re-commitment to the team.