It has taken me almost two days to start to make sense of what transpired Thursday Night in New York City at the 2010 NBA Draft. Going into the draft, when asked for comment, I had told the crew at DIME Magazine:
“The Raptors are at a defining moment in their franchise’s 15 year history. Do they let Bosh walk, trade guys like Turkoglu and Calderon and rebuild around a core of Bargnani, DeRozan, Amir Johnson, and the #13 pick? Do they draft a “NBA ready player” , trade one of their point guards, take on some salary and try to rework the existing roster to remain competitive with or without Bosh? Or do they go all in and try to retool by moving the #13 pick and one of Calderon, Turkoglu or DeRozan in a play to land another big name player to impress Chris Bosh and convince him to stay- to try and make a run at the East. Whatever their decision is, their selection on Draft Night will be a good indicator of their path moving forward.”
Now, just three days later, its hard to imagine anything being less true. The fact is that we can’t read anything into the Raptors drafting Ed Davis. They had to pick him. When he slipped to #13, the team would have been crazy to have picked Patrick Patterson over him, as many sites are suggesting that a) they should have or b) they were going to. That’s like picking Okafor over Dwight Howard, and well, six years on, we see how that has turned out. The Raptors got lucky, very lucky. Davis dropped (for a number of reasons- none of which are legit) and they were the lucky recipients.
Again, when the boys at DIME asked me to comment on what transpired at the draft, I told them:
“If at No. 13, you can draft a guy who can crack your rotation off the bench, you are doing well. If you can draft a starter, you have done real well. If you can draft an All-Star, you have won the Draft. Ed Davis has All-Star potential….Rebounder, shot-blocker, explosive…this is a home run at No. 13.”
For the Raptors brass, it was a no brainer. Davis was easily the best player on the board and it would have been a huge mistake to have passed on him. If you follow the theory of drafting by tiers –as Chad Ford suggests many teams do: Davis is in a different tier from everybody else available at 13.
I mean, Luke Babbit also dropped and what no one is talking about is how Colangelo didn’t draft Babbit, who by the way is the prototypical Colangelo player. Instead for some bizarre reason Raptors fans are actually bad mouthing him and this pick? I mean, media guys in this city who are bad mouthing this pick should have their press passes and credentials taken away. Now, I understand that some will say that basketball media in Toronto commenting on the NBA draft is like Hockey media in Anaheim commenting on the NHL draft – but here’s the thing that’s different – the fans. Raptors fans are very intelligent fans who know a lot about the team, the players, and the sport. It’s embarrassing at times to read some of the stuff being written about Colangelo and Davis right now.
The Raptors did not draft Davis to replace Bosh and drafting Davis does not mean that Bosh is on his way out. It doesn’t mean that the Bosh to LA for Bynum talks are dead or that Colangelo will now sign and trade Bosh for a point guard. It also doesn’t provide any insight into whether or not Turkoglu is staying and it in no way is any indication that the Raptors are happy with their point guard selection. They drafted Davis because he was the best player on the board. Plain and simple.
So I say, kudos to BC for making the best choice possible for this franchise moving forward. I just wouldn’t read too much into it.
As always, standing in the key, I’m the Doctor. I’ve got my feet planted and I’m planning on taking a charge.