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Toronto Raptors' Jamaal Magloire, of Toronto, holds a ball as players return to practice in Toronto on Thursday December 8 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young

Chris Young/Reuters

The Toronto Raptors have signed Jamaal Magloire, making the veteran centre the club's first Canadian player in its 16-year history.



The club announced the signing Friday.



"It's an honour," said the six-foot-11, 33-year-old Toronto native. "I'm very privileged to have this opportunity. This doesn't happen very often. There's only 450 guys in this league and not only am I a part of it, I get an opportunity to come home.

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"I'm so happy."



Magloire has played 11 seasons in the NBA, averaging 7.5 points, 6.6 rebounds and 22.1 minutes in 646 regular season games with the Charlotte/New Orleans, Milwaukee, Portland, New Jersey, Dallas and Miami.



He has averaged 7.3 points, 5.3 rebounds and 19.8 minutes in 46 post-season games.



He was an all-star in the 2003-04 season when he started all 82 games with New Orleans, averaging 13.6 points and 10.3 rebounds per game. He was one of only 11 players that season to average a double-double.



Magloire acknowledged that he became emotional after signing with his hometown team.



"I tell myself I don't want to think about the past, everything I went through to get to this point because it's very hard for me," Magloire said. "I'm happy I'm here. I'm a Toronto Raptor.



"It's always been a dream of mine and I'm looking forward to having a great year."

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