Toronto Sun

This isn’t a huge revelation, but the centre position through two games has been a black hole for the Raptors. Coach Dwane Casey says he will go centre by committee primarily using Jamaal Magloire, Aaron Gray, and Amir Johnson with a little Ed Davis thrown in. He would like to use Davis more at his natural power forward position behind Andrea Bargnani. At some point though the Raps are going to have to get some production at centre.

Yes, it’s only two pre-season games but offensively the Raptors look lost far too much of the time. Johnson, who was the king of the put-back last season, seems to have lost his touch in that regard. From a shooting perspective, with the exception of Bargnani, the Raps are all very much still in pre-season mode. Normally that wouldn’t be a bad thing, but the season starts for real Monday. Casey felt the slow start — they didn’t score until the 7:38 mark of the first quarter on Wednesday night — really put the team on its heels and affected both sides of its game.

Veteran guard Anthony Carter, who did not dress, believes the offence will improve immediately once the Raptors start to set good, hard screens the way the Celtics do. The screens he was seeing in the first two games aren’t good enough or the Raptors aren’t waiting on the screens to get the open shots. Carter is still waiting on word of an MRI he had on his shoulder.

A few too many uncontested layups this game that will not make Casey happy. They’ll also be talking in the next few days about closing out on shooters just inside the arc. Rajon Rondo had far too much time to set himself and make mid-range shots Wednesday night, but for Casey the big no-no was the easy points inside the paint. That can’t happen under any circumstance.

Toronto Sun

“We have had a lot of change in this team, a lot of rules changes,” veteran guard Leandro Barbosa said Wednesday.

“It’s not that last year wasn’t professional but this year is much more professional when we do things on the court. If we don’t do things on the floor right, the way the coach wants us to do them, he is going to get us.”

Barbosa clarifies that when his questioner raises an eyebrow.

“I’ll give you an example,” he said. “If you don’t have your shirt tucked into your shorts, you are going to have to run. It’s something we need to pay attention to. The little things that they’re getting on us about so when it comes to defensive skills that he wants us to do or whatever else we’re focussed.”

For Casey it’s a matter of setting the tone right away. From day one he has asked that his players get to the arena not just in time for the beginning of practice but early enough that they can get in their individual work or their individual treatment done in advance.

“Attention to detail is one of the major things and if you don’t do it you are held accountable,” Casey said.

It has been Casey’s experience that not only is this type of approach necessary for success, it’s what most players want.

“Usually in the year-end review that’s the first thing you hear,” Casey said. “Nobody is being held accountable. They are sometimes afraid to ask for it because something’s going on. But it’s nothing unusual. We had a veteran team in Dallas and they were held accountable.

“You don’t have to be a dictator about it. Just do your job. You don’t have to be a tyrant. It’s just making sure guys do their job. It’s all about winning. It’s not about satisfaction or doing it my way or the highway. It’s not about that. It’s about building a program that is going to last.”

Jose Calderon is on his third head coach since arriving in Toronto and he’s already seeing the benefits of Casey’s approach.

He doesn’t like to use the word professional in comparing this year to last because he has felt the Raptors have conducted themselves professionally each and every year he has been here.

“It’s just different,” Calderon said. “It was professional last year. It was just different. Everyone has a different way they do things. Everybody look like a team when we’re not on the court or even when we are on the court. Professional is not the word I would use because I think everyone has been professional here every year.”

Toronto Star

Job No. 1?

Work on the offence.

With disparate groups of player combinations struggling for any measure of cohesion or flow, the Raptors were at times dreadful on offence here Wednesday night, winding up 81-73 losers to the Boston Celtics in their final tuneup game.

And while the defence was again solid at times — maybe not as consistently tenacious as it was Sunday but an improvement over last year nonetheless — the Raptors simply couldn’t find enough offence to make it a game.

“We have to come out with more of a swagger, more confidence offensively,” Casey said after the game. “I thought we were tentative and it carried over to our defence.

“When we buckled down and played our principles, we were okay. But the key is you don’t give up layups, you don’t give up second shots.”

With a new starting five and a willingness to put odd combinations on the floor — at one time the backcourt was Jose Calderon, Jerryd Bayless and Gary Forbes — Casey got a look at a bunch of things that didn’t work. Now he’s got between Friday and Monday’s season opener in Cleveland to work things out.

While Andrea Bargnani (20 points) and DeMar DeRozan (16) were effective for stretches offensively, the Raptors got little or no production from anyone else, really.

Aaron Gray started at centre and provided zero points. James Johnson, the starting small forward, had four (double his production of Sunday) and starting point guard Jerryd Bayless had six points but was a non-factor for much of the game.

Toronto Star

The Raptors will now sport four different jerseys at times during an abbreviated 66-game season. They have their traditional white home uniforms, red ones for the road, black ones as a “third” jersey and the camouflage ones. Gone are the green uniforms worn around St. Patrick’s Day and the blue Huskies throwback jerseys.

National Post

When head coach Dwane Casey said it was a goal for the Toronto Raptors to keep opponents under 45% shooting, he might have needed to specify a goal for his own club’s offence.

In their second and final pre-season game, the Raptors limited Boston to 39% at the TD Garden, but shot a woeful 32% themselves in an 81-73 loss on Wednesday.

Toronto outrebounded the Celtics 48-38 but made only one three-pointer, by Jose Calderon. Starters DeMar DeRozan, Jerryd Bayless and Andrea Bargnani were a combined zero for 12 from beyond the arc.


Bargnani was seven of 17 — missing all four of his three-pointers — and scored 20 points. DeRozan was four of 13 overall and scored 16 points with 10 rebounds. Bayless was four of 16 for 12 points.

Loud Mouse

Fact. Canada sucks. The way they pronounce about, how they suck at all sports, and how they keep giving us loser ass musicians like Drake and Biebs. Well all that is in the past now. Canada has taken drastic measures to make sure they are no longer the laughingstock of America. Starting with Toronto and their biggest contribution to the world, the Toronto Raptors. With Chris Bosh gone and their rebuilding process underway, the Raptors have unveiled their new jerseys today to show fans that they’re not fucking around anymore. We here at loudmouse love a good underdog story and I’ll be damned if we don’t stand for beautiful basketball jerseys and talented professional basketball teams

The A(bro)ciation

15. Toronto Raptors

I can’t believe that there is a question as to who the worst team in the NBA will be in 2011-12. I don’t even care about records. This team will NOT fill seats, make it on SportsCenter, or even provide the ladies with some eye candy. Rough times in Toronto right now.

John Schuhmann: I think it could be Rubio. He’s definitely got weaknesses to address, but his passing is a special gift that will set him apart from other young point guards. Iman Shumpert is my dark horse pick, and I think Jonas Valanciunas, who won’t join the Raptors until next season, could be better than any of this year’s rookies.

Boston Globe

Though the Raptors did not present a difficult test for the Celtics, Rondo showed signs of being in midseason form with 17 points and six assists in a 22:30 stint. Rondo scored 12 points as the Celtics took an 18-7 lead eight minutes into the contest.

The Celtics starters sat out most of the second half, Jermaine O’Neal leaving the court in the third quarter for the massage table.

“He’s old,’’ Rivers joked. “I didn’t want him falling asleep on the bench or anything. He said I want to get a massage and I said, ‘yeah, sure.’

“He looks great. What you saw is what he’s been all camp. Coming out of mini-training camp he was our MVP. He’s a rare bird; it’s rare you see a guy who blocks shots, takes charges. It’s just unusual.’’

Rivers decided to try both Daniels and Pavlovic in starting roles at small forward during the preseason. Pavlovic was in the starting lineup last night.

Bleacher Report

The Raptors are a young team with budding potential, but they will have to wait at least one more year for their young players to develop and mature before being able to contend for a solid playoff spot. 

However, if these young players use their youth and athleticism to their advantage, and new coach Dwayne Casey can get them to play some defense, they could legitimately challenge for the eighth seed in the weak bottom half of the Eastern Conference. 

That’s a big "if" though.

2011-12 Record: 26-40

The Picket Fence

Now as I mentioned in the first post, PhDSteve, over at Raptors Republic argued in his latest podcast that it doesn’t really matter where the Raptors pick because there’s no real consensus #1 and the Raptors can get a good PG later in the draft.

That would make sense if the Raptors biggest need is a PG. It isn’t. The Raptors biggest need, far outweighing any position or skill, is a franchise player. Who cares if the Raptors get the best PG in the draft if they still don’t have a franchise player. In the NBA, teams generally only go as far as their best player can take them. Atlanta’s problem is not that they don’t have a good team. It’s that Joe Johnson is a perennial All-Star, but not a truly elite player.

In fact, Toronto’s history shows the limitations teams have without truly elite players. While Vince had the potential to be one of the greats, he never fulfilled that potential and the farthest the team could get with him was the second round. Bosh was a perennial All-Star, but simply not the type of talent that can lift a team above mediocrity.

While there might not be any sure-fire Hall of Famers, like Tim Duncans or LeBron James’, there are still a few potential franchise players in this draft. Anthony Davis, Andre Drummond , Perry Jones and Harrison Barnes have been the most talked about (although I personally am not sure Barnes has any elite skill that would allow him to be a franchise player), but Quincy Miller and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist also have some potential. That’s six players, but most likely half are not going to fulfill that potential, so getting first crack is all the more important.


4.  Speaking of the All Star game/weekend … No, it’s not true that Toronto is on-board for the big game anytime soon.  As I’ve written and talked about numerous times, T.O. likely won’t have a shot at the festivities until the organization and the city can figure something out with the long-standing mid-February tenant of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre:  The Auto Show!  The MTCC would need to be used for the “Fan Fest” that’s always connected with NBA All Star weekend and the lack of availability hurts the Raptors’ chances.  Plus, while the ACC is world-calls in many of its amenities, trust me when I tell you as a guy that has seen every corner and bowel of that arena, there is VERY little space to do anything extra like accommodate throngs of media, celebrities, and VIPs, etc.  Honestly, if the Raps ever make it to a Conference Final or NBA Finals, I really don’t know what the media relations and community relations staffs will do to manage the people and the numbers.  Keep in mind:  the ACC was originally supposed to be a basketball-only facility (thank Isiah Thomas for that).  But then the hockey folks jumped in and extra spaces and dressing rooms and overlow rooms, etc. quickly became the Maple Leafs dressing room, visitors dressing room, rooms for referees, and much more.  The press room, for instance, is at least half if not a third of the size it was supposed to be.

5.  What We Saw On Wednesday:
– Toronto’s offence is still a ways away from where its defence is
– I still believe the Raps could/should go undersized with Amir Johnson or Ed Davis as their starting centre
– 32.4% from the floor and 5.9% from distance is going to put you on the wrong end every time
– If James Johnson can bring some consistent offence, he could be such a valuable piece to the long-term puzzle
– Gotta be impressed with Andrea Bargnani & DeMar DeRozan getting to the line
– I still put very little stock in the +/- stat in the NBA

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58 Responses to “Toronto Raptors Morning Coffee Dec 22”

  1. AB7.38pt.on.cb4

    I am confident DCasey will turn this team in a good one. Very soon. Valanciunas is ready to play as starting center, no doubt and was by far the best pick.

  2. nottheendoftheworld

    I agree with the JVal assessment – he was the right pick, but it’s the old cliche, big men take longer to develop … while JVal’s team is undefeated in EuroCup, he’s not the starting center but is playing well in limited minutes. Give him a few years before he’s the answer at center for the Raps.

  3. BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

    The Rap’s can’t change their basketball culture until they get rid of both AB & Jose until then it’s just another BC pr media spin in the wind as he slicks us with his trickery and tricks us with his slickery ie coaching change is really just 3 new coaches (Casey, Davis, Sterner) plus 3 holdovers (Nori, Hughes, Roth) from Jay’s (who was promoted to the Rap’s front office to be BC’s nut hugging yes man) staff of idiots.

    When you have a starting big man that is not held accountable for his on court efforts, plays like a shooting guard and won’t dive on the floor for loose balls, consistently box out, challenge for rebounds, change/alter shots plus add a 30 year old starting pg that is a matador defender with a potential hammy injury on the horizon, running on analog speed in a digital age you get BC’s current bullchit Euro basketball vision in action for the Rap’s.

    After all that bs with the CP3 trade (not to mention the Ewing draft) it’s hard for me not believe that Stern & BC don’t have a wink & nod agreement to turn the Rap’s into the NBA’s International experimental franchise for future Euro NBA expansion plans starting with drafting AB #1 overall in 2005 (gifted to BC from Stern?) and with BC apparently focusing on acquiring as much International talent in each subsequently off season since then to add to the Rap’s roster- do the math.

    All the Rap’s problems at center are because Andrea Bargnani aka The Pope aka King Bargs aka Golden Child aka Lazy Ass Mofo’er is a 7’1 250 pound pussy ass coward who is now after 5 years in the NBA is trying to say that he is a PF thus stunting the Rap’s and Amir & Ed’s PF development in order to satisfy his PF own fetish since most NBA Centers keep on kicking his ass during games.

    And just think next season the Rap’s will add 2 rookies to the roster mix of an already ‘young team’ full of more bullchit BC promises of future returns.

    I bet BC wants to roll out- Val, Bargnani, Kleiza, add token American SG, Calderon on TDot fans next season…..smdh

    After suffering through last season Raptors fans need to tell BC to step off and not support this bullchit team of his in 2011-12 by buying game tickets, merchandise and the like when we could have had a pg like Kemba ‘Shake n Bake’ Walker in the TDot right now!

    • JT's Hoops Blog

      First I think you’re WAY off base.  It looks things are getting better and the Raptors already two ingredients of a succesful team and those are good chemistry on and off the court.

      • p00ka

        The guy you’re responding to is either a pathetic clown that gets his jollies baiting people with the same crap every day, or has a miserable life and wishes to spread the misery around: misery loves company.

      • BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

        Of course things are getting much better- where are the Raptors headed this season again, oh yeah, the NBA draft lottery……..that’s success alright…..if you’re drinking BC’s kool aid……smdh

        Any intelligent, self respecting, knowledgeable basketball follower knows that BC is still pissing on Raptors fans and calling it rainwater, shitting on fans and calling it Kobe steak.lmfao

        Fyi- success comes with Ws & Ls, nothing less nothing more in the NBA- recognize game not media spins in the wind, buddy…from Division Champs unto Conference Chumps with AB as the Franchise player left to build around- all under BC.

        • Nilanka15

          Ok, it’s obvious to all you’re not a believer of this “rebuilding/building” plan of taking lumps now, collecting draft picks and cap space, then making a run in 1-2 years.  Whether Colangelo had this plan all along, or simply backed into it because he had no other choice, is certainly up for debate (but it’s not what I’m attempting to bring up for discussion).

          So, if you took over the GM title today, what would YOU do to turn this team into a 50+ game winner for multiple years to come?

          • sleepz

            It’s always good to hear differences of opinions and although you won’t agree with everyone, there is a point ‘Gots2go’ makes that I agree with.

            BC is a spin doctor. Although he might be saying the right things about rebuilding, i’ll still wait to see it actually happen before I give him the benefit of the doubt.

            He has to get a high draft pick this year via the draft and he will, however I DETEST the moving of AB to the 4 and calling it his ‘natural position’. This is all BC spinning it to sound reasonable to fans. He wasn’t saying that until last year when he called him the ‘enigma of all enigma’s and perhaps he’s showcasing him or trying to find his best role but for me Davis should be getting the starting spot at the 4 and AB coming off the bench to provide scoring.
            Casey should have let them earn thie minutes and position at the 4 , but Andrea was shifted over immediately and it still bothers me. If this team is about it’s ‘defensive intensity’ moving forward, I want Davis getting those minutes as I feel he’s a much better option protecting the rim and will provide better defensive intensity, he just needs the chance to play some heavy minutes at his ‘natural position’. He can’t score like Bargnani but if you want to establish an identity and play the right way, I’d rather see Davis starting.

            I tihnk AB could be a potential 6 man of the year btw, however until they play him off the bench or trade him, I can’t and don’t trust Colangelo at all as I still thinks he calls the shots on the court as well.


            • Nilanka15

              Oh man, I completely agree on the “Bargnani is a power forward” nonsense.  It’s an absolute joke!

              But like you suggested, I’m hoping it’s merely a play to showcase Bargnani.  After all, it might be easier to sell a 5 RPG career rebounder if he’s NOT manning the middle.

            • BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

              BC calls all the shots on starting and rotation minutes- believe that, we’ll see if AB gets held accountable this season or if he will continue to get 17 shots for 20 ppg regardless of his other on court deficiencies.

              It’s like a BC cult mind set throughout the Rap’s organization that that has apparently left Casey (calling AB Dirk like- really now?) a babbling sometimes stuttering mofo’er in interviews while trying to recall BC’s talking points when answering Raptors basketball

              The whole is AB a PF or a Center argument is nothing more than a smoke screen as so that BC can buy his Golden Child another year from ticket/merchandise buying fans in the TDot(Canada)- but we don’t believe you, you need more people!!

          • BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

            It’s not about what I would or wouldn’t do as the imaginary Raptors GM it’s about what has been done by BC to put the Rap’s in this particular precarious predicament of hoping to get lucky by drafting a franchise player in the NBA lottery.

            I deal with reality not fantasies or promises for the future (who can predict the future?) in relation to the Rap’s current & near foreseeable basketball situation.

            • Nilanka15

              Yes, I realize that we can’t control the future, and I appreciate not wanting to get pulled into a debate about hypothetical scenarios.

              But if you don’t want to provide an alternate, may I ask what the purpose is of enlightening us with your views?  Are you attempting to convert how we see things, and hope we boycott the Raptors (and the NBA as a whole)?

              And if we all do jump on the BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!! bandwagon, and refuse to acknowledge basketball for the foreseeable future, what do you expect the outcome will be?

              • BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

                This is a Raptors basketball forum for folks who follow the Raptors- you do you & I’ll do me, nothing more nothing less.

                • p00ka

                  You’re a mouthy coward that just harps on historical mistakes to be an “intelligent” hero. Let’s talk current situation without hanging your genius hat on 20/20 hindsight and make a suggestion regarding what your qualified opinion is on how to manage better NOW and moving forward. It’s a simpleton’s style to criticize what we already know didn’t work out. Share your genius regarding what your responsible GM duties would do NOW.

    • Glen Guntwald

      Every time you write these long, drawn out diatribes about nothing, I get a little cheerful knowing that you’re however many minutes it took you to write it closer to death. Hark, for we’ll never have to read (or briefly skim out of fear of getting dumber by reading ’em) your stupid posts!

  4. O D

    Val + # 1, 2, or 3 pick is an awesome two year haul!
    If the pick in the upcoming draft is a “franchise” PF package AB and AJ, and get a point guard, or SF, or get a pick and with that pick get a PG, or SF. Next we open up the vault for a franchise SF, or PG based on what we do not have. If we drop a bit in the draft, miss the “franchise player” then grab one the better PG and turn around and sign a SF, and let AB / ED handle the PF. A first grader could chart the future course of the raptors.

  5. sangaman

    The loss of reggie evans is huge..None of the guys picked up in the offseason has his physical presence…and rebounding ability. The raps management just doesnt get it..tough guys are important in every sport. Evans will destroy the western conference alongside talented bangers like jordan and griffin.  Go Clippers!

    • Nilanka15

      I appreciated Reggie’s toughness, but he was so horrid offensively, that he was a liability half the time on the floor (it was 4 against 5).

      We already have a heavy-usage, 1-dimensional player on the Raps that requires “hiding”. Do we really need another?

    • RapthoseLeafs


      Rebounding was not the problem last night – Offense was. 

      I liked Reggie, but his contribution wouldn’t have changed that result.

  6. FAQ

    Soooo… is it going to be the tribal ‘honking’ fans… or… the tribal ‘wailing’ fans this shortened season???

    What must be evident to Morontonians and the rest of basketball Canada is that the U.S. homies jus’ don’t wanna play or live in Moronto…. it’s jes’ not da hood with da action like back home.

    I see BC trading DD for somebody like Casspi or Jerebko and trading the first round pick for Ricky Rubio maybe… and then scouting the Chinese league for a player for the Markham fans…. and then his job is done.

  7. BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

    Why did BC trade Jarrett Jack for JBayless again as Jack is clearly the better player- oh yeah, Jose feelings were hurt that he couldn’t beat out Jack…smdh

    • cdub

      Bayless is a poor man’s Jarret Jack.  A poor man’s Jarret Jack belongs in the D league.  I don’t know why they are wasting minutes on him.  What do they think he is going to become?  Even when he had that fluke game last year against his former team, the coach pretty much said “yeah….it was a fluke, there is no consistency, that’s why we traded him”  he didn’t literally say that, but that’s what he meant.

  8. Statement

    From a grantland article today.

    “That’s what I wanted to do with [Andrea] Bargnani last year, but [former Raptors coach Jay] Triano wouldn’t let me,” Carlesimo says. “He said it was demeaning. At least our smalls had a chance of getting the rebound.”

    – P.J. Carlesimo talking about the strategy of letting the guards rebound and the bigs run up the floor.

    All I have to say is…boom, roasted, Bargnani.

    Of course, I want Bargs to play well this year and blah blah blah, but this is too funny to pass up.

      • Statement

        My take is that it is demeaning because as part of the strategy, it would be admitting that the bigs (read: Andrea), couldn’t crash the glass effectively and this strategy would make it very obvious to onlookers, thus making Bargs look bad.


        • mountio

          I think PJ is right on the money. It continues to baffle me that people try to jam players into traditional buckets and dismiss them if they dont fit.
          “He plays the 5 .. he has to have 10 rebounds or hes useless”. Doesnt make sense. Co-incidentally, a “5” that doesnt rebound well could be useless (in fact, odds are thats true). BUT – what if you had great rebounding smalls (ie J Kidd) and a shit rebounding big man – doesnt it make sense to at least try leaking your big guys? Not saying the raps smalls were great rebounders .. just saying that coaching takes creativity .. and JT had none. Who gives a shit if its demeaning? Do what it takes to win and dont be afraid to use players positives and try to hide their negatives (isnt that what coaching is all about?)
          I dont think he even did the simplest things like going “big” (ie AB/AJ/ED together) or small when it ever mattered in a game to try to switch things up.
          Anyways .. hopefully Casey is a step in the right direction here.

          • Gman

            Especially considering that Bargs can actually put it on the floor…I would have liked to see that experiment.

        • RapthoseLeafs

          Actually …. If you read the article, PJ was suggesting this scenario for Jersey, and that it was a strategy he wanted to try with the Raptors. But apparently – and this is PJ’s version (he was let go remember) – Triano thought it was demeaning. Carlesimo threw in the “dig” about Bargnani’s rebounding.

          PJ is not the first to get a dig in on AB – but as all things Andrea, it sells “page hits” on the blogs (as well as the mainstream media). Especially for a team that can’t even make it on any sport channels’ radar.

          For better or worse – Bargs is the catalyst that brings all the hate & love together, in a convoluted battle of wits. In the marketing world, he’s gold.


      • Statement

        That last part where P.J. (somewhat) sarcastically states that at least the guards would have had a chance at the rebound is a slight towards Bargnani.

    • BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

      Carlesimo knows that AB is a pussy rebounder after spending a year with him & that Jay was a yes man to BC he didn’t coach he just regurgitated whatever BC wanted on the court…lmfao

      Let the guards crash the boards and let AB leak out since the guards have a better chance of getting the rebound than the apathetic Bargnani.

      Andrea- ‘What I do on offense is more complicated than defense & rebounding’

      (7’1 250 pound) Andrea- ‘I am not a Center, I am a PF’

  9. Yelaroth

    People also need to realise that 2 of Bargnanis 3point attempts were end kf quarter buzzer beater ‘hail marys’ and forced to shoot off of shotclock expiration.

    • BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

      People need to realize that if Bargnani hadn’t had 5 rebounds taken away from him by teammates he would have had 9 rebounds for the game……

    • cdub

      Bargs was actually playing well, he was 6-12 at one point.  Started forcing things at the end.  Get used to that the way the offense looks so far yikes. 

  10. FAQ

    Raptors must either be a Euro-centric team or a homie-centric team … you can’t have it half’n half.

    The culture clash and mentality differences cannot be accommodated in the NBA.

  11. Paradigm Shift

    I’m sorry if this sounds too negative, but last year’s worst defensive team is coming out of preseason with its offence “well behind” its defensive readiness…… and people really feel the Raptors are a couple of pieces away from contention? Really, JV and a high draft pick are going to be enough to turn this puppy around?

    Of course the Raps will eventually play better this year, but I fear there is still a long road ahead …

  12. AB7.38pt.on.cb4

    In my opinion with DCasey as a coach, this team is 2 pieces from being a competitive team who can surprise and reach finals in the East. I mean competitive (not the best) where in a playoff scenario plays the role aka last year Memphis.
    How ?
    1-  JV is a big part of it and I believe he is ready because is agile and his feet are fantastic. His feet are like  crazy man.

    2-I m not seeing a rookie coming but BC will pull a big splash for an AllStar.Yes an AllStar coming of TO because of DCasey and Money, even giving away your pick.
    My preference is R. Rondo and I believe Boston is hungry on rookies becasue aging.

    3-The second piece will be defined by improvement of DD-ED-AB, and favorable market situation. I would like a J.Terry kind of player.

    I think BC decision to bring DCasey is the most important moves he has made for the future of the franchise

    • Paradigm Shift

      1) Ok I’ll buy in to the JV hype. He’s yet to play a game in the NBA but people other than Raps fans are saying good things about him. So I will concede that he could be a really good NBA player. My hope for that to come to fruition is as strong as anyone’s.

      2) I don’t see it coming through free agency. Some have argued here that once  the team has turned it around, FAs could be lured to Toronto. I am skeptical but, I think there is no chance to get a high quality one here before that. I note your example of Rondo, and assume your vehicle was a trade. Still, and this is perhaps an easy argument to make with him in particular, I don’t see Rondo being happy to come to Toronto and with his attitude that could be a mess. I think the All Star would have to choose to come here, for it to work… and I realise that is paradoxical to the first part of this paragraph but maybe that explains my pessimism.

      3) I really hope I wrong on this one but I just don’t think DeMar will become the player many hope. Ed could easily become a really important glue guy and I won’t go near AB with a ten foot pole in your presence :->

      I think everyone feels good about Casey and it way to early to judge anything about him. I think I recall even Jay’s “not in my house” defence getting support here before it fell apart in practice (i.e. during games :-p)…. but it is way to early on that front.

      With all that you’ve put forward. I guess the whole thing will come down to the draft because I don’t see the elusive and vital “Franchise” in any of your comments above.

    • Jap_jesus

      no wonder the ACC is always full, some people are so deluded. ignorance is bliss I guess.

    • Bigbalboski79

      absolutely agree on Casey being the biggest move.  holding these players accountable AND teaching defencive fundamentals (ie positioning, boxing out) will make many players better.  no one payer makes this type of impact…

      on the downside, forcing everybody to defend will really reveal how thin on scoring this roster is.  we really need an NBA calibre PG as well as a SF who can defend and hit the three consistently.

      i am not as down on Bargani as most are.  this coach willfinally show us what his limitations are as i think we will finally see maximum effort.  i think Ed davis has better game suited to the nba, and once his body fills out i think he displaces bargs.  

      i think the raps eventually deal (for a PG or SF) from a position of strength, which is at PF where we have a glut, especially if you incl kleiza… i see a package to get a player or pick. 

  13. Buschfire

    Raptors if managed well can be a competitive team in  2 years from now. This season to suck and develop the young guys, next offseason to draft 1 if not 2 quality picks. + JVal + free agent signing or trade. then 1 season to mesh as a team then the next year = competitive.

  14. Dove0008

    We need two more pieces. First and foremost…we need a ready to play SF. We also need a PG moving forward ( I love JC but he is 30 and for a team that is three years away from viable the math).

    • FAQ

       HOPE springs eternal from the minds and hearts of tribal honking Raptor fans.

      Seems they have been singing the same desperate tune for the last 10 seasons.

      A couple of more first round draft picks and some good FA’s and we’re playoff bound.

      Keep deluding, suckers… it ain’t gonna happen soon because of “competition”.


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