Raptors Rapture

With the 2009-2010 Toronto Raptors season in the books, I have decided to dedicate the next portion of my blogging duties towards a player-by-player analysis -in numerical order -of the Raptors roster. Today’s feature is the smaller of Toronto’s Italian stallions, Marco Bellinelli, who decided to dawn the number 0 in hopes of symbolizing a fresh start north of the border -after being dealt to the Raptors from the Golden State Warriors for Devean George. In coming to Toronto, both Marco and the Raptors brass hoped to find a consistent point producer off of the bench, with a touch of play-making skills -both of which were overshadowed by his limited use under Don Nelson’s system in Golden State. Let’s take a look at how he did:

Toronto Sun

Chris Bosh is right about one thing: It’s time for the Raptors to spend some money, exceed the salary cap and forget about the NBA luxury tax. Raptors fans have been extremely supportive. They deserve far more than what management and ownership has provided in return … The trouble with all this talk of the Raptors moving Bosh in a sign-and-trade deal is this: Outside of the Knicks, where can the Raptors get any real return for Bosh in a sign-and-trade. You can’t get it from Cleveland, Miami, Dallas, or really anybody else in the East

Toronto Sports Media

Happy Saturday evening. So as the Raptors season came to a close, yours truly emailed 23 Toronto sports media personalities and asked them the following:

“Your the Toronto Raptors, assume you can sign Bosh at the maximum- would you do it?”

They were told that they could only answer with one word and that no one but I would see the responses.

I got 20 responses back and the results were/are very surprising and overwhelmingly one sided.

Of the 20 people who responded, they are either writers, on television, radio or otherwise in the sports business. Each of them is a recognizable name as well.

Here are the results:

The Province

718: days since the Raptors lost to the Orlando Magic in the NBA’s first round on April 28, 2008. That’s two full seasons since the last playoff appearance. The Raptors, of course, choked down the stretch drive when just a few weeks ago it appeared they’d have a middle seeding for the playoffs.

NBA Roundtable

LeBron, Wade and Bosh

All three players entered the NBA the same year and signed maximum contracts after their rookie deal expires. They each earned the same amount of money this past season.

  • Thirty percent of the salary cap = $16.34 million
  • 105% of previous contract for LeBron, Wade and Bosh = $16.57 million
  • 8% annual increases = $1.33 million
  • 10.5% annual increases = $1.74 million

Total value of a non-Bird maximum contract (five years, 8%) = $96.15 million

Total value of a Bird rights maximum contract (six years, 10.5%) = $125.52 million

A difference of $29.37 million between the non-bird and bird rights offers.

LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are all certainties to be offered maximum contracts. There difference between those contracts is just under $30 million. No way those players give up a guaranteed $30 million if they don’t have to. So if any of those players leave their respective teams, it is a near certainty that they will do so through a sign and trade.

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