Says Maurizio Gheradini whilst guzzling down a pizza-milkshake:

My impression is that in Toronto we will have four or five new players for the next season.

Let’s assume five, and to have five new players you need to say goodbye to five existing players. Let’s see. Bye Rasho. See ya Patrick, here’s a Sobey’s application form to help you out. Antoine, you chucked at a higher rate last year than any other year in your storied career, you play decent defense but considering the Raptors’ defensive capabilities, that’s like being the tallest midget. We know one of Calderon or Jack are going, so that takes us to four and finally we have to deal with our two main free-agents – Bosh and Johnson. There are your five players on the outs. Who’s in? Hard to say, definitely a draft pick, maybe whatever comes back in a Bosh deal? European product?

He also goes on to say that the level in the European leagues is “very high” which always does well to scare the crap out of me. It’s like your mechanic telling you that the brake-pads he just installed came from China where the quality is “very high”. Ugh. Whatever the case, I do hope there are some assistant coaches heading out the exits as well, starting with defensive specialist Marc Iavaroni and Micah Nori, who should be replaced with Alvin Williams and the psycho from No Country For Old Men (pictured above for those of you living under a rock).

Jarrett Jack, why aren’t you a starter in the NBA right now? You started 79 games in your second year on a 32-win Portland team, and the next year you lost your job to Steve Blake. Yes, Steve Blake. If we trade Jose, I’m not sure you’re to be trusted as a starting PG. After watching Nash and Parker go at it, after watching Rondo pull down 18 rebounds and Nelson knock down step-back contested Js, I’m not sure if either of our PGs comes even close to being top 10 or 15 or even 20. I’d like to think if Chris Bosh leaves, we at least will have one position where we’d have an advantage any given night, and as sad as it is to say this, PG is the closest bet. I’m also down on this “point forward” business, I mean, how often does it really work? Scottie Pippen with the Bulls, Lamar Odom at times with the Lakers, Hedo Turkoglu last year with the Magic…doesn’t happen much and when it does seem to happen, the teams happen to be loaded at 4 out of 5 positions.

We’ve got a team-option of $850K for next season on Sonny Weems which we’ll no doubt pick up, but the question is whether to re-sign him to a longer deal when his value is low. This could be a classical case of “buy low” if there ever was one. It all depends if Colangelo has the foresight to see Sonny’s future based on what he’s shown us. Signing him to an extension this summer on the cheap could be a very smart move, but only if Weems continues his improvement. At the same time, there’s something to be said about letting a player earn his coin in a contract year. If Weems makes the starting SG spot his own next year, his price could easily inflate upwards of $5M/yr whereas now he’d be liable to sign a three or four year deal at perhaps half the price. It’s easy to hand out big money after looking at a resume, but investing shrewdly in the NBA is much more impressive.

Colangelo has done something like this in the past. Although he traded Steve Nash early in his career, and he went on to become a decent player in Dallas, he did sign him back when most thought Nash had reached his full potential. After joining Phoenix for the second time, Nash won two MVP titles. Of course, he also traded two first round picks for Penny Hardaway when the latter’s prime was clearly behind him (ahem, Jermaine O’Neal, Hedo Turkoglu). Browsing his resume, I couldn’t find any instances where he signed a no-name player who turned out to be something special.

Up next in our random look at things, we’ll see just who the “board” Colangelo keeps talking about when he says that they’re committed to winning.

  • Larry Tanenbaum – Kilmer Sports Inc.
  • Richard Peddie – MLSE
  • Erol Uzumeri – Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
  • Bob Bertram – Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
  • Glen Silvestri – Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan
  • Robert MacLellan – TD Capital Group
  • Dale Lastman – Goodmans LLP

Just a friendly reminder that we’re still controlled by science teachers who, if I know my science teachers, are pissed that they haven’t had new lab equipment in years and are forced to teach out of textbooks which haven’t been updated in decades and still say that the earth is flat. Also, when I read the name Bertram, I immediately thought of this guy.

Finally, someone used the word “croudsource” in front of me today and I was forced to look it up:

Crowdsourcing is a neologistic compound of “crowd” and “outsourcing” for the act of outsourcing tasks, traditionally performed by an employee or contractor to a large group of people or community (a crowd), through an open call.

And I immediately thought to myself, you know what, this is how NBA teams, or at least the Raptors, need to be managed. Crowd-style! Instead of every transaction being approved by a bunch of science teachers, we all get to vote on it, and judging by the RR polls, we would’ve done a damn solid job. For example, this off-season we would’ve already fired Triano and 4-Korners.

Sam Mitchell was on the Fan 590 with Eric Smith and Sam says that he’s “starting to get some interest” and that he was “very impressed” with the Sixers and that he’s “definitely interested”; he also says that playbooks are overrated and Jamario Moon is a future Hall of Famer. I can see him landing there, apparently Eddie Jordan was softer than Bargnani’s pillow and the one thing they need is somebody coming there and yelling stuff at them. Sam’s good at that, let’s hope for his sake he gets a decent set of assistants who can bail him out when it comes to the old playbook.