Who should the Raptors sign this summer, if anybody? Team RR took went on a retreat at our home-office in Athabasca, Alberta, and came up with a plan. Seven of them.

Tom Liston: Given the young talent on the squad, I think the Raptors should look for one of two key ingredients in free agency: complimentary youth that can grow with the team or a true veteran leader to help mold this team. Since other RR members are likely to pick Marc Gasols, Nenes, or perhaps even Greg Odens of the free agent class, I’ll offer out my pick on the other side: Shane Battier. Does he fill an immediate need? Not really. However, my reason is simple: he exhibits every quality I want to see this club embrace: class, effort, excellence, defense, leadership and team play. Battier is all about wins, not glory. He also probably comes at a reasonable price and perhaps a two-year deal. Perfect, if you’re in the camp where the Raptors try to peak a few years out. Why? Battier becomes the ultimate locker room leader and eventually would move into a management role of the team. And it bringing more advanced analytics to the team wouldn’t hurt either.

Blake Murphy: Tough to formulate free agency comments when the landscape for this summer is so bleak and vague. Still, I must participate in the exercise. Let me first qualify my free-agent selection by saying that with only one draft pick, one who will not be in the league this year, the Raptors should be a team scouring the NBDL-wire or undrafted rookie lists to try and land an under-the-radar player to fill out the roster (tough without a Summer League, but definitely doable through training camp). In terms of NBA talent, the most glaring need is a defensive center to supplement the big-rotation of Bargnani/Davis/Amir(/Alabi).

I don’t think it’s prudent to offer a multi-year deal to nearly anyone unless you can get a top-tier guy for cheap (unlikely, with the free agent crop being led by Nene, Chandler, and Oden, and thinning out after that), so my focus would be on a temporary stop-gap, similar to what Reggie Evans was intended to be, but hopefully with a bit more versatility and defense, maybe at the cost of rebounding. A Chuck Hayes would be decent on a 2 or 3-year deal, but more likely options appear to be Kwame Brown or Joel Przybilla, guys who may be forced to accept shorter deals under a stricter CBA. My apologies….”a few words” turned into “a rambling paragraph,” and really I just spun my wheels…the same thing all NBA teams will be doing until there is some more certainty about 2011-12.

Sam Holako: While Tyson Chandler is most peoples’ pick, he will be heavily sought after by better teams who are contenders right now. As far as more reasonable targets go, I’m torn between two players: Greg Oden and Andrei Kirilenko. Oden is interesting because you might be able to buy him with a 3yr/$30mil deal (that has incentives and games played milestones baked in); some teams won’t want to risk that on an oft-injured big man, but his value is undeniable if he can stay healthy.

Ultimately, my choice would be to target Kirilenko, who would provide veteran leadership in the locker room, solid defense as the starting small forward, and the ability to make offensive plays when his number is called. I realize the need at center out-weighs the need at small forward, but I’m not sold on Johnson/Weems there. Jonas Valanciunas is the long term (for now) answer at center, and without any available point guards that could usurp Calderon, my choice is to fill the small forward spot that has been seemingly vacant forever.

phdsteve: If the Raptors are serious about rebuilding then they shouldn’t sign anyone. The truth is it’s a weak free-agent crop and the Raptors always have to overpay. Kirilenko? Battier? Are any of these veterans actually going to help this club? The worst thing they can do right now is lock themselves into a 5-year deal, even at the mid-level, on a guy who won’t be a core piece when the team is ready to compete 3-5 years down the road. Portland just qualified Oden at $8.8 million, and even if he ends up being a stud, that’s too much for a team that just drafted its center of the future. Same goes for Chandler, Nene, and all other bigs out there.

They need to just DO NOTHING. Its rebuilding time and that means being patient, letting the young guns get their minutes, and spending as little cap as possible. Coming out of the lockout, cap space will be far more valuable than any minor piece they’ll be able to sign. Not to mention, fans shouldn’t want this team to win 30 games next season: either win 40+ or stink (and since the’ve re-upped Sonny Weems, drafted a guy who’ll be in Europe, decided that Bayless and Calderon can man the point, and that Bargnani is the starting 4-, oh ya, and since Casey is keeping half of Triano’s staff) – looks like fans who are cheering for 20 wins are about to get their wish.

Matt52 (forums): What should have been an easy few lines has become very difficult. It is difficult to make suggestions for free agency given the uncertainty of the new CBA and what the Raptors roster will look like. The wildcard in all of this is Andrea Bargnani. If he is kept, a center will be needed in the short-term to pair him up with. Nene, Gasol, Jordan, and Chandler are all going to be extremely expensive and looking for 4-year deals – minimum – and that assumes they would come even here. The other options leave me feeling, um, uneasy shall we say. There selections from the Gimp Bin (Oden, Ming, Pryzbilla, and Foster) and the Stiff Bin (Brown, Gray, Haddad). The only free agent options that seems realistic to me is Kwame Brown and Samuel Dalembert – neither of which inspire confidence near or long term.

With center’s out of the way, barring any potential trades, the Raptors are set at point guard (Bayless, Calderon, and Barbosa) and power forward (Bargnani *wink*wink*, Amir, and Davis) so that leaves wings. The Raptors, in my opinion, should be looking at free agency as a means to acquire rotational players that address needs for when they become competitive again in a couple of seasons. With next year’s draft having legitimate all-star talent (or possibly better) at the wing position, I see no reason to waste money and future flexibility to eek out a few more wins. Three players to consider on the wings: Reggie Williams, Daequan Cook, and Wilson Chandler. Of the three, Chandler will certainly cost the most. I would really like to put JR Smith in there but unfortunately I don’t think he is worth the gamble with a young team, despite the immense talent he possesses.

Apollo (forums): If you gauged what the legions of Raptors fans wanted from this year’s free agent class prior to the draft you would have gotten something like “a high profile center and a starting wing”. Now, after the draft? I think the majority are intrigued and excited by Jonas Valanciunas’ potential. They’re committed to waiting to see what he has to offer. For that reason my list would include only lower profile center options such as Joel Przybilla and Nazr Mohammed. The small forward slot is where the money should be spent. Here I would suggest the likes of Wilson Chandler and Tayshaun Prince as solid veteran options. If they’re interested in higher risk options, then Michael Redd should receive consideration as his leadership, perimeter shooting, and overall clutch play would be very rewarding should he recapture his past form. Lower profile wings such as Earl Clark, C.J. Miles, Luc Richard Mbah a Moute and Chris Douglas-Roberts should also garner some consideration.

Me: It’s a free-agent crop that’s mostly filled with third or fourth-tier players, not that I mind investing in them except that none of them have the chance to be impact players. So you can scratch off going with the investment route expecting a great ROI down the road. The only guy I would’ve taken a chance on is Greg Oden on the cheap, but since his qualifying offer was extended I’ve lost interest. There’s no way I’m willing to risk valuable cap-space on a long-shot, especially since whatever the team does, it’s going to be amongst the worst in the league next season. I can buy the argument that we need a veteran, so Shane Battier peaked my interest until I realized he’d rather play for a contender at this stage in his career. Landing DeAndre Jordan or Marc Gasol was wishful thinking to begin with, and Jonas Valanciunas’ draft-and-stash reduces the sense in going after him.

I’m going to say let’s aim for next summer. Give Solomon Alabi major minutes at the center role, get a high pick next year, continue the evolution of DeRozan, Davis and hopefully but not likely, Bargnani, and then be a player in the summer of 2012. That’s when the likes of Deron Williams, Dwight Howard and Chris Paul become available. Yes, the chances of signing any of them is low, but just maybe the Raptors can show something this season that makes Toronto an attractive proposition. Once that’s done, we’ll see whether Bryan Colangelo and that vaunted respect and adoration he has around the league can deliver a proper free-agent. If we can’t sign one of the big names, no problem, wait till 2013. Hey, rebuildin’ ain’t easy. If you had to twist my arm and say pick one guy, I’d go with Daequan Cook, the Raptors need to space the floor and are horrid at three-point shooting. In a year when Barbosa is gone, Cook could step in nicely.

Here’s the full free-agent list and a post outlining the available bigs.

Your thoughts are sought.

  • Riego

    Battier and a couple of undrafted guys in short term non-guaranteed contracts.

    I’ll love to see Battier in TO helping in the developing of our players. I think he’ll fit well with Casey.

    • Milesboyer

      I would also love to see Battier – he’s almost a player/coach combination, just what a young team needs.  Now convincing him to come to the Great White North to compete  for a……… good draft pick…..in the twilight of his career is another thing.

      • Nilanka15

        I agree with both of you.  Battier wouldn’t be part of our “youth movement”, but in order to increase the likelihood of our youth learning/improving next year (and beyond), we need players like Battier to lead by example.  We can’t rely on Casey to wear that hat alone.

        Oakley and Willis were priceless as veteran role models back in our “glory days”.  That recipe should be duplicated.

        In addition, I like the idea of Wilson Chandler.  He could be our core SF, and would be a dramatic upgrade in 3pt shooting compared to J.Johnson or Weems.  There’s room for improvement on the defensive end, but his versatility cannot be ignored.

  • TheR3dMenace

    I like Steve’s take.  Although, I like to see if the Raps could get Wilson Chandler for a reasonable percentage above than the going rate.

    • Boomer

      As soon as I saw the title of the article I thought Wilson Chandler. He’s young enough to stick around should the rebuilding plan actually work, as well.

  • Eddy

    The Raptors price their product like they are big spenders and contenders but we all know they won’t spend what is necessary to win. It has also become clear that the majority of fans are now happy about all the losing and are cheering for more. Consequently, I would think they would concentrate on some way to drop that 22 win number lower next year.

    • Nilanka15

      The choice is between:

      1. Overpaying this summer on mediocre free agents, trading future picks in trades, and winning no more than 45 games for the next 3 years, only to rebuild again in 2014. (i.e. instant gratification).

      OR

      2. Taking your time, spending wisely, allowing for flexibility in the future, developing internal talent, adding core pieces through the draft, and aim to win 50+ games three years from now, which can be sustained for multiple seasons thereafter (i.e. patient rebuild).

      Which would you rather have?

      • slaw

        Option #1 was what they did between 2006-2009. Look how that turned out.

        I am not sure what the point of these free agent discussions are at this point anyway. No one knows what the cap is going to be or if there is even going to be a season. In any case, why would a team that is so far away like Toronto risk their future to do something drastic right now? Even an elite player (which they won’t get) makes this a 40-win team at best. 

        I agree with phdsteve. Leave it alone and look at having room to add players when it will actually make a difference, even if that means being bad for a couple more years. 

      • Eddy

        I’d call that a false dilemma. My preference is an ownership groups that spends the way they charge, a group that treats Toronto like the 3rd largest market north of Mexico. Bosh said the same thing when he wondered out loud if a team which absolutely refuses to pay the tax is committed to winning. After watching them since they started I don’t know if I can sit through another 5 years of losing and stay interested. 

        • Nilanka15

          But the current (now expired) CBA prevented teams from exceeding the cap to spend on free agents.  So I’m not really sure where this “lack of spending” idea came from.  When we had cap space, money was indeed spent (see Turkoglu).

          • Jonathan

            Don’t mind Eddy.  He’s been piping the same tune for a while now.  Maybe what he really wants is for ticket prices to be lowered, because it’s clear he’s never understood how the CBA prevented the Raptors from going into the tax, except by signing many crappy ass players on minimum contracts.  There has never been a situation where we could have signed someone good but for being cheap.

        • slaw

          The problem has never been the Raps spending money, it’s been spending it wisely. 2001 was the perfect example of this. The O’Neal trade and the Turkoglu signing are other examples.

          Only Boston, Orlando, LA and Dallas spent significantly more than Toronto last year. At ~$69mm, Toronto was 12th in league spending and was more than competitive. It just has crappy players.

    • Mjtriller

      stupid comment…way to go!

  • Brian Gerstein

    Tank, tank, and more tank.  Given the labour situation and the unknown, our cap dollars are best to be protected and used once we know what kind of playing field we are dealing with.  Factor in the overall weak crop of players, why bother.  We need to finish with the worst record, or as close as possible this year if we play.  The fans against the drafting of Jonas have already started to reconsider once they read the reports on him and even seen his play, as in the Under 19 friendly game against the USA.  This will make the sell job that much easier.

    Colangelo by picking him with his own contract status has shown me he is prepared to do a proper rebuid and MLSE has bought into it.  Stick to the plan and play the crap out of our youth.   Battier deserves better than to play on a lottery team.  I am sure he feels the same way and given his age will want to play for a real contender, not a rebuilding team 3 years away at best.

    • http://twitter.com/Liston Tom Liston

      Good point – Arsenalist is likely correct with his comment on playing for a contender at this stage in his career.  Even if its a long shot, I’d like to see the Raptors try – he’d be a great asset in the organization for several years to come.

      • Bendit

        Along with Nash! If there are no desirables on the bench to attract f/as maybe some behind the bench might help.   

    • Star_bury

      Agreed. Tank, and make trades for any extra picks in next year’s draft that you can get your hands on. Next year’s draft looks splendiferous.

      • yertu damkule

        next year’s LOTTERY looks great.  the quality after the lottery (i.e. depth) is iffy.

    • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!!

      Fyi- that U19 USA team had been together less than a week and didn’t have the top US players ie the players that won the U18 World Gold a year ago, not to mention no real big men. Can’t sell sh*t until Jonas goes up against NBA players. I can’t wait until the 2012 Vegas Summer League to see Jonas against journeymen-rookie pro basketball players.

      Well, if BC is going to tank (those who support tanking are the enemy of competitive spirit & true pure Rap’s fans) then he should cut ticket prices by 50% all the way around as I doubt that fans in Toronto want to pay their hard earned money to support a non competitive tanking team that’s part of a ‘I (BC) fucked the team up’ rebuild?

      Plus, if BC tanks next season- whenever that may be, there is no certifiable guarantee that the Rap’s will be good in the future only BC’s new ‘Winning Plan’ whatever the fuck that is.

      3 years away at best- why not just give BC 10 years to turn this Team that he fucked up around ie currently building around AB (who really wants to play with Bargnani outside of Reggie Evans?)- I don’t see DD sticking around for all the losing & Ed already has 1 foot out of the door in my mind.

      No one seems to want to play for BC when they have other equal $$ or better options- BC’s star has faded not to mention that both Jay & he lied on CB post free agency with insinuations about his character & his being but they still tried to re-sign him.

      Rebuild? Add sugar, water & stir…….

      Kemba >> Jonas

  • Balls of Steel

    Shane Battier for leadership. I also feel that three-point shooting is much needed in this team so Reggie Williams would be awesome as well. Kirilenko however, as interesting as he might be will be paid by the Russian Billionaire as the Nets next starting SF (read it somewhere). Some fans feel that we shouldn’t go after anyone because it might derail the rebuild / draft position. However, I don’t think that the kids will just learn by themselves. They need a leader and an Alpha god to carry out the defensive identity that this team is trying to mold after.

    PS> James Jones formerly of the Heat could be had for cheap as well. He shot 43% from 3 last year.

    • http://profiles.google.com/ebrian Brian Y

      I agree that some leadership is needed.  Let’s see if Kemba Walker is available 😉

      Seriously though, I can see a Shane Battier type deciding to spend the last couple years of his career molding and modelling some young players, but he’s only 32.  He’s one contract away from lazing away on a bottom feeding team.  Battier will be pursued by various contenders this offseason and he’ll most likely end up staying in Memphis.

      • Balls of Steel

        If you get that type of leadership from a rookie in Walker, then there’s
        something severely wrong with this franchise. Battier is suggested as a mere
        supplement to who I think is the leader of this team (or at least becoming
        one) – Demar Derozan.

        • Toshmon

          Was there something wrong with the Heat when Wade lead them to a championship in his rookie season?

          • jimmie

            It was Wade’s 3rd season, and he was NOT the leader of that team. Names like Mourning, O’Neal, Payton, Posey and D Anderson come to mind first. And I think trying to compare Kemba Walker with Wade might lead to trouble.

          • Balls of Steel

            Yes, Kemba Walker isn’t Dwayne Wade.

            BTW, Wade led the Heat to the Finals in his 3rd season. I believe this firther weakens your argument.

            • Toshmon

              my bad

  • Mediumcore

    I’d go with phdsteve’s idea of not doing anything. Unless you need to fill out a mandatory roster spot because of injury or something then no point in taking playing time from the younin’s.
     
    For the sake of putting a name out there though I’d say bring back Anthony Parker for perimeter D and, and 3 point shooting. He’s a good locker guy as well and though he’s not an out spoken leader type player he can provide some veteran maturity.

    • Nilanka15

      For the same reasons mentioned above regarding Battier, Parker would be a solid piece.

      • jimmie

        That’s a great call. Parker would be perfect as a locker-room presence. Cheap, no long-term aspirations… They really do need a solid veteran leader, but I don’t think they should go out of their way to get one. The roster is on the right track, and anything that would put that in jeopardy (via high salary/long contract, or taking PT away from the younger guys) would be a bad idea, IMO.

  • Timo in Waterloo

    I’m with PHD Steve and Arsenalist… I would like to see another year of the talent we have already growing… playing together… I really don’t know what we have in Alabi, lets give him some PT and find out… what is the next stepsin the maturation for DeRozan, Davis and for that matter Bayless and James Johnson ? Unless they get significant PT we don’t really know.. this team played with a lot of heart the last stretch of the season when they were down to 8 bodies due to all the injuries… why tie our hands by adding a mediocre free agent at this point… now trades, that is a different story….. Battier and AP would be nice and I agree they are two smart and classy players, but they are not essential at this point.. I do hope to see Joey Dorsey back as the sixth big… he would be cheap and is good insurance when the inevitable injury bug hits..he make up in effort what he lacks in height

  • http://twitter.com/FrostByte096 Samuel (Frost-Byte)

    Battier, is one of my Fav players of All time because he focuses on defence, unlike most players who focuses on offence. To him, its more important the person you block misses, than you shooting in, it helps balance the team alot especially one with Demar and Bargani who are fully offensive players.

    I hope he goes to my Rockers though, but if he doesn’t toronto would be my second option.
    [Which is unlikely he’ll go to Rockets (Went to playoffs with memphis + Rockets have too many Sfs now]

    But I think Toronto should focus on Getting Alabi some time on the court as he was rated a top defender in his division in NCAA. We need to get a PG to a contract deal for a year like Nash so we can drop him and go for the draft. [Since he may retire] trade caledron that way so suns get a good PG.

    Trade Barbosa for 1-2 draft picks + a Center that is a prospect Ex. That 7 foot 3 guy, from rockets (God I cant believe i dont remember the name). A center is high trade asset, so in 2012 we can ship him for a Excellent PG.

    In the free agency, I doubt Colangelo will go all out. He’ll probably sign a major deal with a player whose a one shot pony (Hedo, O’neil)

    We need to use the free agent market, and sell player for draft picks, because lets face it, most players who go to toronto are interested in the big contracts Colangelo gives (hint Suns: Nash, Marion, Stodamire)

    In my opinion the roster of 2012 Would look like this
    PG: Draft Pick 2012, Bayless
    SG: Demar, Weems
    SF: Draft pick 2012, James Johnson
    PF: Davis, Bargani (BUT, he will rotate to Center so he keeps his minutes equal, so it equals minutes for the F/C players), Johnson
    C: Val, Bargani, Alabi 

    • Nilanka15

      “Trade Barbosa for 1-2 draft picks + a Center”. 

      Trading Barbosa (an expiring contract) for three players???  Even Babcock wouldn’t make such a move.

  • Andre

    I also think they should NOT do anything. Trade players. Amir Johnson seems to be the odd one out. Trade him, sign back reggie, stock up on picks for the next 2 years. Imagine Harrison barnes and Myck Kabonga.. With Kemba walker.. oh wait, we didnt take him.. was it knight? no… Jonas? LOL. are we going to wait for 5 yrs to find out hes a PF? 

    • Star_bury

      Yeah, Kabongo would be nice to have running the show…

      NBAdraft.net has Myck going 9th. It also has Barnes at 2, Perry Jones at 4 and Jared Sullinger at 6 (All considered potential #1s had they come out this year). I realize a lot will change throughout the NCAA season, but it’s a MUCH deeper draft than this year’s and some team is gonna get “lucky” and miss the play-offs with a .500 record and get a steal in the lottery…

    • Nilanka15

      Trade Amir and re-sign Reggie?  How does that make sense in terms of eliminating the odd-man out?

      • yertu damkule

        well, to be fair, he also seems a little miffed that they passed on walker to take JV, so…

      • Andre

        you need vetern presence on the bench, plus 10+ boards a game is alot better then 4+ fouls a game and johnson sits out anyways

        • Mack North

          You get 6 fouls a game, why not use them? His offensive game is much better than Reggie, he’s about 7 years younger, and his rebounding(given the minutes) is almost on par with Reggie.

  • GMoney

    James Jones is a FA – He can shoot the 3 and plays good D.  He’d be a nice piece for the wing. 

    • yertu damkule

      true…but i think he’ll be at least somewhat sought after by teams closer to contending.

    • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!!

      Yes, he would be a solid bench rotation player or spot starter plus he can hit 3s with ease & defend.

  • NH

    If we do have a season in 2011, I do not think Raptors can afford to put the same team on the floor again without any upgrades and expect to sell tickets.  They are still a business, and without even their 1st round pick playing (I get it, Jonas Val may be worth the wait), Raptors have to find a way to fill up the ACC for 2011-2012.  This is why I would like to see Yao Ming in a Raps uniform.  Don’t sign him to anything crazy, and give him a 2-3 yr deal so he can mentor Jonas for a bit when he comes.  Yao will ensure that ACC is kept warm until the 2012 season where we get a high pick and Jonas.  I don’t mind a Wilson Chandler or Thaddeus Young signing as well.

    • Nilanka15

      I’m intrigued by the idea of bringing in Yao to “coach” Valanciunas, but expecting any minutes out of him at this point in his career seems far-fetched.  If he ever announces his retirement, maybe he could be added to Casey’s staff in the same way Ewing was added to Orlando’s staff for Howard’s benefit.

    • Nilanka15

      Plus, there’s the added benefit of Toronto’s large Chinese population for Yao.

      • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!!

        If Yao ever plays in the NBA again it will most likely be for Houston as per his own words.

        Rap’s do need a big man coach though- Jack Sikma? Antonio Davis? Horace Grant?

  • Nilanka15

    Other intriguing names out there:

    – Jeff Green (restricted)
    – Arron Afflalo (restricted)
    – Shannon Brown (player option) – I believe he’s talented enough to start for most teams.
    – Thaddeus Young (restricted)
    – Grant Hill – for the same reasons as Battier and/or Parker
    – Josh Howard – A head-case, I know….but might be worth the gamble based on talent alone.

    • Mash

      Grant Hill for sure!  His wife is Canadian too. 😀

    • mountio

      Jeff Green would be great if you dont have to him an extreme amount. Im not sure he will free up (the Celts almost have to sign him to justify the trade) .. but we will see.
      To me, only players like him that have a chance to be a part of the core should be considered. I know Battier would be a good character guy .. but Im not sure I like him taking away time from JJ / LK (not that either are anything special .. just that we need to give them time to see if they acn be a useful piece or not)

      • Nilanka15

        If Battier is obtained, I would prefer him coming off the bench.  With this young team, his contributions would be greater in the locker room, than on the floor (I hope).

  • hateslosing

    I like the idea of a guy like Battier but that would be the only sort of free agent I’d be looking into, a guy who could help give some leadership in the lockeroom and who brings the intensity on defense. I doubt Battier would come to us, he is perfect for a title contender looking for a starting three. Thinking about ti though, I don’t know where he could go. The favorites for next season all have their starting threes: Heat-Lebron, Dallas-Marion, Lakers-Artest, San Antonio-Ginobli, Boston-Pierce, Knicks-Carmelo, Memphis(current)-Rudy Gay. Maybe the Magic would be interested, but they tend to want 3 point shooters to compliment Howard. If BC can sign Battier I’d be happy, even though our pick would be worse next year.

  • Mike

    Not sure why Battier would want to come a losing situation, but he would be best the choice. Definitly a contending team will step up for him.  After him I say we look at d-league scrubs..we are not winning this year, might as well reach for young talent and develop them…maybe BC will bring back Will Soloman and Hassan Adams?

  • cb

    if the nba loses next season to a work stoppage, does the 2012 draft still happen? and if so, how do the teams get seeded? same as this year (fingers crossed).

     

    • Arsenalist

      It does happen.  If they go the NHL route, they’d average the record in the last three seasons.  I think the Raptors would have something around the 5th pick.

      • yertu damkule

        that’s an option, i don’t think anything’s set in stone.  and to clarify, when the NHL lockout killed a season, they essentially gave each team a set # of ping-pong balls according to their W-L record (i can’t remember if it was for just the prior year, or cumulatively over a certain # of years, as arse indicates) & held a lottery (remember, the sydney crosby sweepstakes).  if so, and the raps’ had the 5th worst record over whatever time-period, then they’d have the 5th most balls in the hopper.

        • Juicey

          I might be talking out my arse, but I think they grouped the teams and gave teams in a certain group the same number of balls.  ie, a few of the worst teams had an equal amount of balls, but more than the rest of the league.  After that Arsenalist is right it was averaged over a few seasons rather than the previous year. 

          Stern could come up with his own new creative scenario, but hopefully there would be no way he could give the #1 pick to New York.

          • yertu damkule

            thanks for clarifying.  it was a bit weird though, they used ‘playoff appearances’ & ‘first overall draft picks’ over the previous 3 seasons (vs. W-L record) to determine how many balls (1, 2 or 3) each team got.

  • Blackjitsu

    Let’s get a FA Center from Europe!!!
    Jokes.
    The best idea is to hold off, and save cap space.
    In a new cap system cap space has its own value,
    puts you in position for trades, makes you an option
    for future free agents, etc.,

  • Kevin

    The free agent crop this year doesn’t have any big name talent but there is a fair share of good talent and serviceable players.  I kind of like the idea of bringing in guys like Kirlenko, Prince, and Battier to mentor the young guys and make us look less pathetic at the wings but they seem like more of an investment that would be suited for a playoff team.  Yao Ming is an option I would at least give a little though about depending on if he can give the team spot minutes every now and then but at the end of the day he is going to sell tickets by attracting all types of fans not just Chinese.  I’d say sign someone serviceable for cheap no need to try and land the top of this years crop and invest in next year’s draft.  I wonder how high of a first rounder Bargnani would land us…

  • cloako

    I like the idea of bringing Redd in.  He should be cheap, and at best helps our three point shooting, at worst, fills a roster spot and can be let go. In limited action with the Bucks last year he looked like he had maybe the same amount left as Peja. 

  • Ashantz9

    Robin Lopez is on the outs in Phoenix. He would be another decent piece moving forward, but we might have to take on Childress to get him. Could be worth a shot.

    • D-Money

      Robin Lopez Sucksssssssssssssssssss..Hes Slower Then A Turtle..

      • yertu damkule

        he’d be worth it for the unintentional comedy alone.

  • O D

    Develop talent and spend narry a dime.

    The goal is to become a big time contender in the 2012-2013 season (I can take only one more year of losing, after that we start to look like minny, clips, wiz, etc.. Always a high draft pick and always a loser)

    As far as I’m concerned we have 3.5 players, Derozan, Barney, Davis, and at a half point bayless.

    In order to expedite our development we are going to 3.5 players every night. I guarantee well be the number one draft pick as well as exponentially improved within our core of players.

    If rules get in the way of my development program I will Alibi, and Bayless to play but only on defense, and if by chance they have the ball with less than 1 tick on the shot clock.

    Next year before or after the draft we will look at free agents.

    Someone forward the to Tanenbaum.

    Thank you.

    • O D

      **play 3.5 players**
      **play alibi**

  • D-Money

    THE RAPS NEED XAVIER SILAS….HE WENT UNDRAFTEDDDDDDDDDDD…

  • Rpsfan95

    JoVa 19 – 13 – 5 Blocks vs Croatia

    • Nilanka15

      I don’t care who the competition is.  Those are impressive numbers.

  • bemeup

    Sign Vujacic and Kris Humphries,then at least we can look at Maria Sharapova and Kim Kard-ass-ian while we win 20

  • WBurroughs

    The Raptors’ lineup as it currently is is very unbalanced. 4 PFs (Casey says Bargnani will be one) and no or one center (depending on your opinion of Alabi). A ton of point or small guards and a dearth at SF. Plus, given that the general opinion is that the Raptors will be one of the 3 worst teams in in the NBA next year, it will be difficult getting FAs. We would likely have to overpay and hurt our chances down the road. the best road for the Raptors might be trying to trade a PF, Calderon or Barbosa for a Center or SF  and avoid the Free Agency rout unless something falls in their lap

    • yertu damkule

      awesome, we’re just like the ‘wolves!

  • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!

    Nazr Mohammed re-signed w/ OKC. Joel Pryzbilla is most likely going back to PO if he doesn’t retire. TChandler is staying with Dallas. MGasol staying in Memphis. Nene is going back to Denver.

    The Raps should target as f/a:

    PC: Sam Dalembert (UFA Sac- Canadian citizen would fill a need)
    SF: Wilson Chandler (R Den S&T?- an excellent wing defender can hit 3s)
    SG: JR Smith (UFA Den- wore out welcome in Denver but is a real talent  can hit 3s)
    PC: Jamal Magloire (UFA Miami- Canadian citizen great veteran presence)
    SF: Caron Butler (UFA Dallas- coming off knee injuy said to be 100%)
    SF: James Jones (UFA Miami- could be a nice bench player that can hit 3s)
    SG: Jamal Crawford (UFA Atlanta- automatic points off of the bench)
    SG: Anthony Parker (UFA Cleveland- great veteran presence)
    PG: JJ Barea (UFA Dallas- can Cuban afford him, Chandler & Butler?)
    SF: Tayshaun Prince (UFA Detroit- would look good as the Rap’s starting SF)
    SF: Al Thorton (UFA GS- a nice athletic wing)
    PC: Hamed Haddadi (R Memphis- a very intersting prospect from the glimpse in Memphis)
    PC: Aaron Gray (UFA NO- big man banger flying under the f/a radar)
    PG: Aaron Brooks (R Phoenix- I want ABrooks)
    PC/PF: Joey Dorsey 9UFA Toronto- gotta have Ben Grimm back in TDot)SF: Julian Wright (UFA Toronto- he plays defense just sign to lower salary
    SF: Josh Howard (UFA Washington- Injuries, could be a steal on the cheap)

    Target via trade:

    PC: Brendan Haywood (trade Dallas- could Amir or Ed be the bait post lockout?)
    PC: Chris Kaman (trade LAC- rumors say he’s available, healthy? )
    SF/PF: Jeff Green (R Boston- ABargnani for JGreen/ABradley/2012 #1 draft pick?)

    But since the lockout begins at midnight tonight- it’s all just wishful thinking.lol

    • yertu damkule

      nene opted out?  from what i heard, it was because he wanted to test the waters (as opposed to re-upping with the nuggs.

      • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!!

        I have heard rumors of Nene to GS as he is now a UFA so time will tell post lockout.

  • BCGheradiniJayGots2Go!!!

    Nazr Mohammed re-signed w/ OKC. Joel Pryzbilla is most likely going back to PO if he doesn’t retire. Tyson Chandler is staying with Dallas.Marc Gasol staying in Memphis.Nene is most likely going back to Denver.

    The Raps should target as f/a:

    PC: Sam Dalembert (UFA Sac- Canadian citizen would fill a need)
    SF: Wilson Chandler (R Den S&T?- an excellent wing defender can hit 3s)
    SG: JR Smith (UFA Den- wore out welcome in Denver but is a real talent  can hit 3s)
    PC: Jamal Magloire (UFA Miami- Canadian citizen great veteran presence)
    SF: Caron Butler (UFA Dallas- coming off knee injuy said to be 100%)
    SF: James Jones (UFA Miami- could be a nice bench player that can hit 3s)
    SG: Jamal Crawford (UFA Atlanta- automatic points off of the bench)
    SG: Anthony Parker (UFA Cleveland- great veteran presence)
    PG: JJ Barea (UFA Dallas- can Cuban afford him, Chandler & Butler?)
    SF: Tayshaun Prince (UFA Detroit- would look good as the Rap’s starting SF)
    SF: Al Thorton (UFA GS- a nice athletic wing)
    PC: Hamed Haddadi (R Memphis- a very intersting prospect from the glimpse in Memphis)
    PC: Aaron Gray (UFA NO- big man banger flying under the f/a radar)
    PG: Aaron Brooks (R Phoenix- I want ABrooks)
    PC/PF: Joey Dorsey (UFA Toronto- gotta have Ben Grimm back in TDot)SF: Julian Wright (UFA Toronto- he plays defense just sign to lower salary)SF: Josh Howard (UFA Washington- Injuries, could be a steal on the cheap)Target via trade:PC: Brendan Haywood (trade Dallas- could Amir or Ed be the bait post lockout?)PC: Chris Kaman (trade LAC- rumors say he’s available, healthy? )SF/PF: Jeff Green (R Boston- ABargnani for JGreen/ABradley/2012 #1 draft pick?)But since the lockout begins at midnight tonight- it’s all just wishful thinking.lol

  • D-Money

    Sign Vince Carter..then Mo Pete..forget alvin williams being the development coach..make him the starting Point gaurd..Bring in jyd the junkyard dog….and for the heck of it sign antonio davis…NOW THAT MY FRIENDS IS A TEAMM

  • D_moro2002

    I think you sign Dalembert to an incentive laden contract–short term (2-4 years–with the last two years being a player option) but front loaded.

    You’re gonna need SOMEONE to play center this year (if there is a season) and Amir killed himself at it last year and Davis doesn’t want/can’t handle it either.  Andrea, as we all know, sucks at it (and also won’t play it).

    I get no one wants to block Jonas but come on. I think he’s great but he might (shock of all shocks) need to have someone at least backing him up when he comes, no?

    Dalembert is perfect. No one trusts him so you can low ball him a bit on the years, but sell him on redeeming his Canadian image and gets to play in front of family and friends on a team where he can prove that he should be a starting centre in this league. Show him some cash so he feels appreciated and can “pay his bills”.

    I get that the pro tanking crew don’t want someone credible coming in and messing with their draft pick. But you know what? No one knows. Maybe Bargs implodes and has to be sat all year (given Casey’s proclivities, this might actually happen :)–maybe Dali gets hurt having to cover for Drea’s ass one too many times. You have to at least let them “think” about competing for a low seed, for no other reason than Demar and Ed need a reason to stick around too. If they see a half decent center, they’re going to go all out to do their best.

    Doing nothing simply provides them with no extrinsic motivation to improve(and as we know, ballers are not the most intrinsically motivated individuals).  The new coach also needs a center to execute his system–or at least HAVE A CHANCE to execute. There’s only so much losing a team can take before they just tune everyone out. The coach will have a short time to have their ears and he deserves at least ONE functional player at his position.

    I am not saying break the bank or upgrade  by losing picks for short term improvement–but if you can get someone useful for nothing but half decent to good money–as long as they are young enough to help out a bit down the road–you do it.

    • mountio

      I think the Sammy D doubters (at least me) arent worried about him hurting our chances of tanking. We dont want him cause hes just not a good player (and he is likely overvalued in the market (or at least in his own mind)).
      If you could get him for something like 2 years @ $4 mm per, then Id do it. But – I think its likely double that (both in terms of years and $$ .. something like 4 yrs $25-$30 mm total or more). I would not sign that deal.

  • Bigbalboski79

    battier would be a great addition. sammy at 3 yrs, $6m per, i’d do it.  anything about 6m? i;’d look at kwame or some other lesser cost.  another option, particularly if theres an armageddon clause so teams can wipe out a bad cpontract would be brendan haywood.  again, 2 or 3 yrs at 5-6m per is reasonable.

    • jimmie

      No to Kwame Brown at any price. I’d rather have an underweight Ed Davis eating those minutes at C. Brown is a slug, and I cringe at the thought of what he’d do to the locker-room.

      I think people might be misreading things here. I think the Raps are looking for a C, but I don’t think they’re looking for a starter. I really believe they’re going to give Davis or Amir that role to begin with, and try to limp through the season until Val arrives next year. My thoughts on ‘the big picture’ are that management sees Bargs as trade bait, Val as the 5 of the future, Davis as the 4, Amir as the primary backup. Whoever they get as a C this year will not have a serious role with the Raps past next season, so I agree they might/should be looking at journeyman-type Cs with a max salary of like, $4-6M/yr…

      • Bigbalboski79

        yer kidding yerself if you think amir or davis starts at centre.  they will get beat up at the five against 260-280 pound centres.  we get a haywood or dalembert to start and eat up about 25 mins a game.  davis/amir may play some mins at the 5 vs second unit/small lineup situations, but no way these guys start at the 5.  they r both in the 225 LB range.

        kwame? okay maybe a reach, but a stop gap player of that type is what we need. a guy who starts for the next 2 years, then moves into backup role.

        • jimmie

          I’m not saying it will work, just that I think that’s likely the plan. They probably will get beat up. But it’s not about competing next year, it’s about competing 3 years down the road.

  • Bo4

    NOBODY! We should trade Bargnani, Barbosa & Calderon by February 2012, if a decent proposal is made by anyone. If not, draft SF James Mc|Adoo in the summer of 2012, then try to trade the three again by Feb 2013 … and draft a PG in the summer of 2013. THEN WE SIT BACK & ENJOY WATCHING THEM …