The landscape of the 2012 NBA draft changed quite a bit last night, or not at all, depending on how much you value Jared Sullinger. A player that many (myself included) had going before the Raptors pick at 8, Sullinger has apparently been red-flagged by multiple NBA medical staff’s, and could now potentially fall outside the first round. While that news is unfortunate for this year’s version of DeJuan Blair, it could also devastate the Raptors draft plans. Just as I was beginning to stomach the idea of Jeremy Lamb in a Raptors uniform, it appears he may be off the board before the Raptors make their selection.

This leaves Toronto in the unenviable position of having to make the 8th pick in a draft where there is a noticeable dip in talent after the 6th, with one of the more attractive options in the 7-10 range apparently gone because of a bad back. The optimist in me wants to believe that a player in the top 6 falls to the Raptors, but the realist in me knows that Toronto will be choosing a less talented prospect who doesn’t fit in the Raptors rebuild plans. If your most likely option is a shooting guard with effort issues (hey, don’t we already have one of those?), and your worst case scenario is picking either a shoot first point guard (Damian Lillard), Ed Davis clone (John Henson) or a project big man (Meyers Lenoard), it might be time to reassess this pick. I’m all for drafting the best player available, but with Sullinger out of the picture, it has become painfully evident that there isn’t a prospect that makes sense at 8 for the Raptors.

The best option left is to move the pick; either throw together a package of picks and players to trade up for a better talent, trade down into the teens for a better team-player fit while acquiring future assets, or move out of the first round entirely for a veteran at a position of need. Unless Toronto comes to its senses and decides to shop the pick along with the much maligned and beloved Andrea Bargnani to a team in need of a potential star at PF (Charlotte, Washington and Sacramento make sense at 2, 3 and 5, respectively), the most likely trade option is to swap the pick for a veteran. Let’s just hope that such a trade would work out better than the 2008 Roy Hibbert for Jermaine O’Neil debacle that set the organization back a couple years.

  • sleepz

    Sullinger’s injury may or may not change what happens in the top 7, however whatever happens before the Raptors select their pick, please believe that there will be players picked that won’t justify their selection in the top 7(happens in every draft) and there will also be players who will be available for the Raptors at #8 who will be considered steals a few years into their careers (happens every draft).

    The key is can the person who is paid handsomely to evaluate these prospects and make the right picks to add talent to this team, up to the job?

    We shall see.

    • steve

      I totally agree.  And looking at Colangelo’s draft record, I feel good about whomever his team decides on.

      • Destro

        his draft record is like 50/50 going back to Phoenix….he hit a couple home runs early on some long shots but he busted on alot of cant miss draft slots….

        • CJT

          there is no such thing as a can’t miss draft slot.

          • Destro

            Yes there is…#1 overrall pick for example 😉

            • Beaverboi

              Oden, Kwame Brown, Olowakandi…Not all 1’s are destined to be stars.  If you knew that Rondo would be a better pick than Bargs in 06, can you please pick some lottery numbers for me for this friday night??

              • Destro

                Oden is injuries….the other two were bad picks by bad organizations….your arguing a small sample size no need sliiiime….I didnt know but i knew of several picks in that same draft that were better than bargs.I advocated for Aldridge in that draft…

            • Thetruth

              Look at the teams that drafted those busts. LA Clippers and a dysfunctional wizards franchise with arguably the worst NBA executive in history in Michael Jordan.

              More often than not, busts are usually the result of poor decision-making. Maybe Oden is the exception and that’s just life sometimes.

              • Destro

                Agreed to argue the #1 overrall pick isnt a cant miss draft slot because of 3 bad picks but proven terrible orgs is stupid as fuck….

        • steve

           Can you substantiate this comment?  Out of his lottery picks, Marion, Stoudemire, Bargnani, DeRozan, Davis and Valanciunas who was the dud?

          • sleepz

            The only thing I would say to this is what is a ‘dud’ classified as?

            Marion, Stoudemire were picks in Phx so I will leave out but some would say with the #1 pick you have to somehow aquire franchise changing talent via the pick or through trades. I would say that as #1’s go Andrea is not a bust but he’s certainly not a franchise changing talent and with the contract he currently has and  the role he plays on this team I would argue he hurts a rebuild rather than helping it.

            Derozan is not a bust at #9 but with Jennings, and Holiday going afterwards and the Raps constant need for a playmaker off the dribble some could argue it was miss rather than hit.

            I like Davis and think he needs time playing the 4 to see what we have but if anyone says he was not a good pick at that number (later in the lottery but still lottery) I don’t have much evidence to argue the opposite.

            I do think JV will pan out to be great value at #5, however this is straight hope and optimism speaking and nothing else.

            • steve

              Using hindsight will always be 20/20.  The Bargnani draft was a very weak draft.  As far as the DeRozan draft it would be interesting to know, if Flynn was still available would the Raptors have taken him?  I think DeRozan is better than Thabeet, Hill and Flynn.  On the otherside of the draft, I personally do not like shoot-first PG and I’m happy Jennings is not on our team.  Holiday and Lawson didn’t go until picks 17 and 18.

              I agree Davis needs more PT… it’s odd how much PT they have DeRozan and how little they’re giving to Davis.

              • sleepz

                I’m a big opponent of the ‘hindsight’ argument.lol

                How else can you gauge or analyze something if you don’t look at the results?

                • steve

                   Well let’s play it all the way out.  If hindsight was 20/20, then does Colangelo pick better than the average in 2009?

                  Which eight players are better than Demar?

                  Griffen
                  Harden
                  Evans ?
                  Rubio
                  Curry ?
                  Jennings (ugh)
                  Holiday
                  Lawson

                  So who’s better?
                  Collison ?
                  Gibson ?
                  Casspi ?

                  Assuming Evans is better than Demar than Colangelo made an average pick in 2009.

                  For me, personally, I do not wany Evans or Jennings on my team and he beat the odds.  I’m not saying Demar is better than a backup SF in the league but I think Colangelo did a decent job with the hand he was dealt in 2009.

                • sleepz

                  Couple of things. Evans (although a ball hog) is better than Demar. But some of the players you’ve listed we’re selected before him, hence BC didn’t have a chance to select those players?

                  Some might argue that Teague and Gibson who also went in that draft are also better players than Demar. Not saying that myself but it can be argued. 

                • Destro

                  I would argue both are equal to DeMar but knowing what i know NOW i still would go with the DD based on the fact he is a superior athlete to both and has the penchant to be a 20+ PPG scorer in this league,and contribute in alot of other ways…

                • steve

                   You know it’s time to stop when the text box is this tiny  😉

                  I’m just saying that if you want to use hindsight to do an analysis then you have to apply it to the entire draft in order to determine if BC picked better than the average.

                  Also I would aruge Evans numbers playing PG are on par or worse than Demar’s — but I will concede it’s very debatable.  I think we both agree they are backups on a winning team.

                • Destro

                  Slanted question you posed,DeRozan is a proven scorer who still has upside and may turn out to be better than some of those players taken AFTER….but why cant you make the same question for Bargs in 06..its a better debate because there were fewer decent picks to choose from and BC got the obvious wrong…at least in 09 you had a buffer zone of decent players so if you missed on one there was another and another….

              • Destro

                2006 was a weak draft but we didnt pick the best player that was available and was the consensus best pick of that draft class so its worth discussing… 

            • mountio

              I would look closer at those drafts (see my post below). For each and every one, there at least 3-4 total duds that were drafted right after the Raps pick. Yes, there are a couple of guys in each draft better than our guy .. but overall when you balance the duds with the odd guy who is better (and Aldridge / AB, DD/Jennings are probably the best examples of a “miss”) .. Im not sure the raps would be in a materially different spot if you swapped either of those guys for who we ended up taking ..

              • sleepz

                Fair points.

                Next question. Would you rather a collection of decent players who are not total duds being drafted, or a few total duds but a few major hits on other picks?

                Not saying that BC can’t hit with a pick this year, however it would serve this franchise well if he was able to hit a homerun or even a triple, in the draft.

                • CJT

                  Of course it would that goes without saying.  I think after Davis (who by the way is still a question mark to me) there arent any sure things.  Everyone is in the same position trying to do their homework to figure out the intangibles that are next to impossible to figure out and make the best selection based on those.  I hope he finds a gem as well. 

                • mountio

                  Yes – obviously id rather have 2 home runs and 2 duds than 4 singles.
                  But – Im not sure we really passed up on home runs. Aldridge might be a triple (but AB is a double). Gay (7 picks later) maybe a triple too.
                  If DD is a single, you might argue that Jennings, Holliday, Lawson are doubles (but Im talking barely getting there with a head first dive doubles .. these guys are nowhere near triples).
                  So – again, given the options I think hes done pretty well ..

                • steve

                   Hahahaha, nice.

                • sleepz

                  Nice analysis. lol

          • Bendit

            You left out Nash & Joe Johnson. He had some excuse-mes too but everyone does even the revered Buford/Pops, Pritchard and Thorn.

          • Destro

            Jonas hasnt played a game yet so you can take him off the list to begin with….Stat and Marion i clearly stated were NOT duds of his picks…

            ED Davis dont know YET
            DeRozan cant call it YET
            Bargnani while not a bust has NOT lived up to #1 pick credentials and has NOT lived up to standard expectations you would expect from a player of his size and position…
            Care to go over ALL his picks made rather than cherry pick 5 ones you can remember ?

  • mountio

    I have to respectfully disagree. While the odd big board had Sullinger going above 8 – most had him well into the teens .. which is where he belongs at best (injury issues or not). I sure as hell hope the Raps were never seriously considering him.
    I hear what you are saying .. i f there isnt a player we love at 8, trading up or down might make sense (Id be ok trading up in particulr) … but if there is a drop off as you suggest, Im not sure other teams will value our pick very highly.
    One way or the other, Im sure glad we established our “winning culture” by grabbing a few extra wins down that stretch .. those are serving us real well right now …

    • Nilanka15

      Totally agree on Sullinger.  His back shouldn’t affect the Raptors at all.

      And totally agree on the meaningless extra wins down the stretch.  2 less wins, and we could’ve bumped the Hornets…and we all know how lucky they were.

      • CJT

        Ok fellas, maybe it’s time to let it go.  It didn’t happen the way you wanted it to, everyone gets it.  Hoffa was a bust etc. etc. etc.  Let’s move forward.

        • Nilanka15

          That’s just it.  Not everyone gets it.  Next year, we’ll be arguing the merits of tanking all over again, having not learned our lesson from last year.

          • mountio

            Couldnt agree more. Everyone is all up in arms about how much better it would be to have the 5/6th pick .. and the same dopes were talking on this site about “winning culture”, which couldnt be less relevant for a 20 (or 22) win team.
            I realize we likely couldnt catch the Bobcats .. but could have easily been well positioned to land a pick in teh 3-5 range. I wouldnt mind staring down Beal, MKG, even Harrison Barnes right now ..

            • voy

              i object to the term “tanking” when it comes to the raptors.  drove me crazy when the team lost and people were saying the team is in tank mode.

              if you suck and you lose its not called “tanking”.  its called reality.

              • mountio

                Agree 100% – its just being shitty (which we are / were). My biggest objection is anyone who somehow thinks that pulling out victories with guys who we all knew at the time have no future on this team (or even guys who do) is completely useless. Its appauling, for example, that Solo didnt get more minutes to at least sink or swim (likely sink .. but you never know?..)

                • steve

                  Amen brother.  We gave a pile of minutes to DeRozan ever since he’s been drafted.  Couldn’t we have least give Alabi 10-15 per night and Davis 15-20?

                • steve

                   Actually Ed did play 23.2 last year… I don’t remember seeing him that much.  :-/

                • CJT

                  to be clear a few of those useless victories were had with 2 d leaguers, and several starters out.  Solo is one guy and sure maybe that would have helped to not help, but come on, there was nothing we could have done to out shitty New Jersey.  Can’t explain the Celtics. 

                • mountio

                  I grant you that .. in some ways that makes it more frustrating in that a) Alan Anderson has no future as a rap (whereas a guy like Solo / Ed at least could) and b) who the hell cares if d-leaguers we wont see next year have a “winning attitude”. To be clear, my hack is in part on the org / Casey .. but mostly on the fans for actually thinking those wins could somehow help us ..

                • sleepz

                  Took too long for Alabi and Davis and the rest of the young players to get burn. The moment they were out of playoff contention they should have been in complete “evaluation” mode

  • CalgaryRapsFan

    I’ve been in favor of trading the pick for an established young star wing (ie: Gay) for awhile, but it wouldn’t take much for just one of the top-7 prospects to fall to #8 (Davis, Beal, MKG, Barnes, Robinson, Drummond, Lillard).  I highly doubted that Sullinger would go any higher than 9th, unless Lillard was the only member of the top-7 still available @ #7, where I expected Golden State to pass on Lillard and go for either PJIII or Sullinger.

    • Thetruth

      I had a hard time believing that Sullinger would even get drafted a number 7. Some people just like to panic I guess. The idea that there is no real talent at the 8 spot is ludicrous. The 2006 draft is super weak and yet Rudy Gay was nabbed at number 8. 

      A trade for the sake of trading is a quick way to end up being the Milwaukee Bucks.

      • CalgaryRapsFan

        I fully agree with your last statement and would surely hope that any trade is not just a knee-jerk reaction, but a well thought out strategy.  For instance, if another team puts a higher value on #8 than the Raptors do, it would allow them to get a favourable return on a trade.  I don’t like the idea of say yes or no to the idea of trading the #8 pick, without knowing what exactly the details of the proposed trade are.

        To me, trading for Gay was the perfect example of taking advantage of a unique opportunity to land a veteran near all-star player, who is still young (only 26 next season) and has room for further improvement.  In my mind, trading for that type of player nets much better value, both immediate and likely long-term, than any player likely available at #8 would, without any sort of risk or need for development.  And since he’s young, it’s not as though the rebuild/building/organic growth strategy is being abandoned either.

        I get the feeling that the Raps would be happy with adding another rookie who would be an immediate solid rotation player, if not starter, but don’t have the desire to take on another rookie who is likely going to be a 2-3+ year project and/or is too much of a risk/reward type.

        • Nilanka15

          I’m holding out faint hope that Gay might still be expendable (regardless of a new owner in Memphis).

          • CalgaryRapsFan

            Me too!

            Davis & JJ & #8 & #37 for Gay & #25… sign me up.

            That deal would increase the Raptors’ payroll by about $11.5M, which is essentially the full amount of cap space the team has available heading into the offseason.  With Calderon ($10.5M) and Forbes ($1.5M) coming off the books after next season, it’s not as though the Raps would lose all financial flexibility either next season or beyond.

            The team would still need backup SG & PG, but I assume one could be found with the #25 pick and the other by using the MLE (or making additional trades).

            • Thetruth

              I’ve enjoyed reading your posts calgaryrapsfan. If that’s your proposed deal than anyone would be a fool to turn that offer down lol ( I don’t mean to bust you and I say this with respect…but memphis isn’t giving you rudy gay for the puh-puh platter lol).

              First, Memphis wants to shed salary and therefore wouldn’t even want to add the pointless salaries of ed davis and james johnson. 

              The only way you could even BEGIN to legitimately discuss a REALISTIC shot at Rudy Gay is offering Memphis Demar DeRozan and #8 pick. That would be a starting point to get Memphis to even listen to you. Otherwise, they are gonna laugh and close the line on you. 

              The deal you proposed, I would take it if I’m colangelo in a heartbeat. Sadly, it is totally unrealistic.

              • Thetruth

                And on Rudy’s contract, it gets really burdensome over the next 3 years…He will make 16 million next season…18 million the season after…and 19 million in the final year of his deal. In this new CBA, that’s KG in his prime money.

                • Thetruth

                  You also need to account that under your trade proposal (which again is highly unrealistic) there is one thing you need to consider: if DeRozan has a good year, you’re going to have to pay him a good chunk of calderon’s money that comes off the books. Why? You name me starting caliber SG under the age of 30 in the NBA besides Eric Gordon and James Harden that have star potential. Like it or not, there is a shortage of young star potential guards and DeRozan will be in demand if he has a good year.

                • Thetruth

                  *a shortage in young Shooting Guards with star potential. Just to be clear.

                • Nilanka15

                  DeRozan will have Bird Rights.  We can exceed the cap to re-sign him without penalty.  This isn’t a problem.

                • Thetruth

                  It becomes a problem when our owners don’t want to pay luxury tax. So you don’t want to get pushed near the luxury tax without having fielded a contending team that is missing a piece. Rudy Gay is too expensive in the new CBA.

                • CJT

                  without the KG in his prime talent.  Franchise crippling mediocrity.

              • Nilanka15

                Memphis sheds $11 million in salary by trading Gay for ED and JJ.  That’s pretty significant.

                • Thetruth

                  Charlotte will shed his entire contract without returning any players. Why would memphis want ed davis when they already have a better big in darrell arthur? My main point that needs to be focused on is that the Raptors could not offer in any way a better package than Charlotte or Golden State without giving up DeRozan at the VERY LEAST.

          • Thetruth

            Golden State would offer its #7 pick and every player on its roster outside of bogut, thompson, and curry for Rudy Gay. Charlotte is open to moving its #2 pick for Rudy Gay. In short, raps have no chance of landing Rudy Gay

            • Thetruth

              And that’s if Rudy Gay becomes available. Obviously, I’m not too high on him after his extremely disappointing first round series with the Clippers. He should have went off on that team, there was no one who could guard him. For god sake, Vinny Del Negro used Nick Young on him for most of the time (a player Hollinger once believed had an allergic medical reaction to playing defense)

              • Matt52

                 His stats against LAC were pretty much identical to his regular season stats except his shooting percentages were lower however he compensated by getting to the line more.

                The real issue in that series was Hollins coaching and Mayo’s shooting – over the last 5 games 18% from the floor?  9% from 3? 

                • Thetruth

                  Granted. He was still being guarded by Nick Young single coverage for significant chunks of time. There was no one on that roster who could defend him – no one (Caron Butler was beaten down). He should have gone off for like 40 at least twice. The clips had no business winning that series.

                • Matt52

                   That is fair point.  Unfortunately, we don’t know what plays Hollins was drawing up.  We do know that Z-Bo was bitching after the each game towards the end and after the series ended about touches. 

                  This is my own opinion and I have little to back it up but if Gay was put in a position where he is told you are without a doubt option 1, he would deliver – especially with a scorer like Bargnani there to take off pressure.

            • Matt52

               Memphis does not want salary coming back.  Charlotte* and Golden State have to send back at least one really bad contract to make any trade work (Charlotte Diop or Thomas & Golden State Jefferson or Biedrins).  Where all other teams have to send back at least $10M, Toronto only has to send back about $3.5M – and possibly less if another team was brought in.    (* things change for Charlotte after July 1st but still the issue remains if the contract of Thomas/Diop must be included with the rights to the #2 pick). 

              Trading with Charlotte or Golden State still leaves the Grizzlies in the same situation of becoming a luxury tax team if they resign their own free agents.

        • Thetruth

          I fully agree with you statement as well regarding never saying yes/no to trading #8 pick without knowing the proposed details. I just have two concerns to highlight regarding your interest in Rudy Gay:

          1) he makes max dollars. That’s going to wipe out almost all of our financial flexibility for the next two years. Do you want to sacrifice all that financial flexibility for Rudy Gay – a player may I remind you who was guarded by Nick Freaking Young for the entire first round series with the clippers (nick young is at least 4 inches shorter than Gay). Not to mention the same Rudy Gay who should have EXPLODED in that Clippers series because there is not a single player on that Clippers team who could guard him (their best wing defender was the broken down Caron butler with a broken hand). Sorry but I wouldn’t want to trade a potential stud in Dion Waiters (remember most scouts agree waiters could probably average 20ppg in the NBA eventually. The concern is with his size and defense) as well as our financial flexibility that we worked so hard to create over the last two seasons for Rudy Gay.

          2) There are no ‘projects’ in the top 10 outside of PJ3 and Andre Drummond. The rest of the project players in the top 10 are ready to contribute BUT of course need to be given 2-3 seasons of learning. My point is there is no player available on the market outside of Dwight Howard and Deron Williams that’s going to come to the Raps and turn us into a title contender in 3 years so why are you hesitant about drafting a lottery pick?

          • CalgaryRapsFan

            1) I guess I don’t see Gay as being too big a financial burden.  Making a deal for Davis & JJ would bring the Raptors up to the salary cap, but not even over it.  They would have the vet exception and MLE available.  It’s not like they’d be way over the cap.  Then after next season, they’d have $12M coming off the books (Calderon & Forbes).  That’s all without using the amnesty clause (Amir/Kleiza would be likliest candidates, IF the Raps decided to use it).

            None of Waiters, Lamb, PJII, Rivers, Marshall, Sullinger really excite me.  They all have potential to develop into solid players, even starters, but they all have just as much potential to be absolute busts or 2nd stringers.  I guess it’s the question of a solid-if-unspectacular known quantity (Gay) VS an unknown high risk/reward player (any of the likely picks available at #8).

            I understand the people to prefer to go for the sexy unknown commodity instead of the less exciting and more well known commodity.  I just think Gay is a great player who is unappreciated and undervalued by his role in Memphis, who is significantly better than any of the sexy picks are likely to become, so I’d prefer to go for the safer veteran route.  Both are legit strategies and both could wind up being more beneficial in the long-run for the Raptors, I just have a different preference than you (and that’s only for Gay, I’m not nearly as gung-ho for a similar move for Iguodala/Deng, btw).

            2) I would give ‘project’ or ‘risk/reward’ tag to Drummond, Waiters, Lamb, Rivers, PJII, T.Jones and possibly even Lillard.  That doesn’t mean I don’t think they will become good or even great players, I just think they will take time to adjust to the NBA game and shouldn’t be counted on to come in and immediately make consistent contribution in year one.

            I’m not hesitant at all.  I would just strongly consider a trade for a good, young, known commodity like Rudy Gay.

            As I said, I totally understand both sides of the coin and I don’t think it’s an easy call either way… there are pros/cons to both sides.  A lot would come down to what subsequent moves would be made each way, to determine which way is ultimately the best move for next season and then for the longer-term as well.

          • Matt52

             With or without Gay, the Raptors will be limited to exceptions in free agency moving forward.  Despite the only $30M committed to salaries in 2013-2014, the cap holds of Calderon, DeRozan, and Johnson take them to the salary cap. 

  • Raps Loyalist

    “Let’s just hope that such a trade would work out better than the 2008
    Roy Hibbert for Jermaine O’Neil debacle that set the organization back a
    couple years.”

    That pretty much says it all. 

    BC has shown he can draft well but is not good at making trades.  Let’s play to our GM’s strength and let him make the pick instead of asking him to make some desperate trade for an overrated vet that looks ridiculous in a couple years time.

    IT’S OK TO STOCKPILE ASSETS THIS SEASON (like a Lamb or PJIII)!!! as this team isn’t going anywhere fast so why make some desperate/panic trade that isn’t going to all of the sudden make this team a threat in the East but could easily backfire like the Hibbert trade.  

    Trading up or down a couple spots is fine but please stop pushing some Gay/Iggy style trade where we overpay for guys these teams are trying to dump for young players.  Wait until the trade deadline if you want a guy like that cause you’ll get him WWAAAYYY cheaper.

    • sleepz

      I hear many people saying that BC can draft well and I guess when you look at his body of work as a GM in the NBA that this can definitely be argued, but as GM of the Raptors can this argument still be made?
      Off the top of my head – Bargnani, DeRozan, Davis, JV. Jury is out on JV as he hasn’t played a game as of yet but is this collection of players enough for us to make the claim that BC has drafted well as a GM?

      • mountio

        Yes, I still think so. Given their position in the draft and the players drafted around them I think his record is still pretty good (maybe not knock it out of the park, but good). Lets look at each
        AB: 3 of the next four picks are duds (Morrison, Thomas, Williams) and Aldridge has been better, but not night and day better
        DD: Jennings looks like a better pick now, but there were lots of questions at the time. Next two (Willams and Henderson) are dudes. Hansborough next … ok role player, but Id much rather have DD
        Ed: next four picks are all basically unheard of (Patterson, Saunders, Babbit, Sherapin)
        JV: Time will tell, but I think general consensus (at least so far) is that he was a pretty good pick at 5 and likely better than Kanter, Thomson, Vesley, Byimbo .. although as I said, this one is VERY tough to judge.
        So, net, net .. Id say the record is pretty good. No total duds (and there were plenty to be had) and a few guys that seem to have turned out pretty well.

        • The Rub

           Aldridge has been night and day better in every possible way.

          • CalgaryRapsFan

            There’s no point discussing Aldridge, since the Raptors had Chris Bosh and were not about to use the #1 overall pick to draft a backup.  I don’t care whether we’re discussing Bargnani or draft history, Aldridge was never a viable consideration in 2006 for the Raptors.

            • Tesla

              +1

            • Milesboyer

              Because Bargnani is clearly a center.

            • sleepz

              He drafted a back-up in Andrea seeing that he’s now a “natural 4”, so the Aldridge discussion is definitely in play.

              • CalgaryRapsFan

                Yes, it’s ironic that it has turned out that way, but Bargnani was being discussed as a C in 2006.

                If not Bargnani, most experts had the pick coming down to one of the three athetlic wings: Roy, Foye or Gay.  One is retired due to injury, one is a free agent who will be lucky to get MLE money and the other is widely considered to be too overpaid to trade for.

                Given the roster the Raptors had at the time, I am still quite happy with the pick of Bargnani.  It just would have been a lot easier to stomach if it was’t the #1 overall pick, but such is life.

                • Truthkiller

                  Bargnani was tried out as a C then a PF then a SF then back to C and this year he was a PF again. Tremendous.

            • steve

               I disagree, I think both could have been on the floor at the same time.  Chris had to (and still does) play the 5 up to that point in his career.  I think now Aldridge could play it better than Chris.

              Besides Aldridge might have made a trade viable down the road.

              Furthermore trying to get Bargnani to play centre was by far a worse idea.

              That said I don’t fault Colangelo for taking Bargnani, it was a risk and wasn’t a total bust.

              • CJT

                Bosh had let it be known that he wasn’t interested in playing the 5 anymore.  So maybe BC’s mistake was paying to much attention to his star player, but Bosh was moving to the 4.

              • Destro

                Anyone thinking you couldnt take LA based on THAT argument has no clue about basketball PERIOD….LA came into the league essentially the same type of player as bargs without the 3 ball…

                • mountio

                  The same player as bargs without the 3 ball? Thats like saying David West is the same player as Blake without the dunking. The 3 ball (or I guess more accurately the outside shooting) is precisely what differentiates AB and LA and makes them very very different (notwithstanding they play give or take the same position).
                  The reality is Bosh and LA are both skinny, tall guys with 15 foot range (somehow Bosh picked up a three pointer in the last couple of weeks .. dont know where that came from). So its totally logical to think they are / were duplicative. AB, on the other hand plays more like a 3, but has size more like a 5 .. so there are a number of lineups you can imagine him and CB playing together .. whereas thats tougher with LA

                • Draftstar

                  LA said he could play C or PF and I believe (can’t remember for sure) he had more of a low post game than AB! Don’t know what 

                  AB said?

            • Nilanka15

              If memory serves correctly, the only other player Colangelo was considering was Gay.

            • Destro

              What a load of BS
              Aldridge and bargnani offer similarities in there game,so to say one can play with CB and one cant is an obvious contradiction and biasness….You notice the MIami heat are about to win a Ship with NO front court players at all….the NBA is in a diff era now where you dont play 4s and 5s you go with your best team…

              That BS about Aldridge not fitting with Bosh has been the longest running shitty talking point for years amongst dumb ass fans here….

              I turned out tho bargnani didnt fit with Bosh…  

            • Theswirsky

              “There’s no point discussing Aldridge, since the Raptors had Chris Bosh and were not about to use the #1 overall pick to draft a backup”

              kind of sounds like Colangelo used this teams only ever #1 overall pick and didn’t select the BPA.  Impressive.

          • CJT

            he’s not a better 3 point shooter. 

        • walterwillaims

          I agree with your post…but I think that Thomson will be a stud 2 guard in this league for years to come…he has great fundamentals and a great stroke…I still like JV for the Raps…

      • Destro

        Outside of Marion,Stoudemire
        He has nothing to hang ur hat on….alot of not quites or question marks or flat out busts
        from Tsakilidis,Cabarkapa,Bargnani,DeRozan,Davis,JV

        IM sorry that shouldnt breed confidence with anyone….

        • steve

           Who was better for the lottery picks?  I think you’re trolling.

          • Destro

            Read above
            2006 – Aldridge,Gay

    • 2ndavepete

      BC traded Rafeal Arujo for Chris Humpries. I liked the trade what about you?

      • Destro

        Then he dealt Hump and his manageable contract and have Amir and Edward in his place…..alot of BCs moves unfortunately are like this….they look good until you see where they finished up…

        • Truthkiller

          Then he signed Amir, a “glue-guy” who only gets you 7 and 7 to a 5 yr $35 million dollar deal. Some GM of the Year.

        • Tonious35

           Putting a 20/20 hindsight on Hump is just not necessary.  Look how he played while he was on the Raps, he lacked the IQ and the freedom.  Smitch didn’t give him enough minutes and the coaching staff didn’t teach him that well on what is wrong or right.  Also Hump is playing on a team now that never won over 30 games when he was on, so his stats will inflate.

      • Raps Loyalist

        All I’m saying is don’t force a trade cause your desperate to “make a splash”. 

        If you can get really good value for the #8 then fine but I’d rather have Lamb or PJIII and than way overpaying for a guy like Gay or Iggy (guys that if they are available will be had much cheaper 6 months from now anyways so why play full value now when you could probably get them for Jose’s expiring and Ed then rather than those two plus the #8 now?).

        • Bendit

          While I agree with your approach sentiment (keep the pick and slow down) I’d rather other players for the pick.  

  • guest

    I have always been in favor of trading the pick and I don’t remember a year where you have heard about so many lottery teams trying to move their pick.  I just don’t think there are too many guys after the first four picks who will come in and make a substantial difference.  

    • 2ndavepete

      Completely agree. But we have to get a starter, not a rotation player, for the pick.

      • Thetruth

        If you want to build a true title contender, you pretty much have to keep the pick without sacrificing either Valanciounas or Bargnani (the most important value pieces on our roster…you could maybe make a case for DeRozan). If you’re searching for a starter, by Chad Ford’s estimation, there are 5 starting quality SG in this draft alone (not all-stars but legit starters).

        Keep the pick in my opinion because the next Vince Carter ain’t walking through that door.

  • Tesla

    I agree, I would also trade the pick. The only reason we’re even considering trading it now is because we didn’t tank hard enough.

    “WINING CULTUR3 YO!!!” Fuck off, look where those wins against Atlanta, Boston and New Jersey has us at… If we don’t end up trading it, draft PJ3.

  • voy

     “…but with Sullinger out of the picture, it has become painfully evident that there isn’t a prospect that makes sense at 8 for the Raptors…”

    i know we are just tossing out opinions but i think it’d be tough to argue that sullinger was the “painfully evident” choice at 8 for the raps.

    i can respect your opionion but I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around the sentiment “ok sullinger is not gonna be available until the 2nd round.  lets trade our 8th overall pick”.

    even if you really like sullinger, why not keep the 8th pick and try to get sullinger with your 2nd round pick?

    • David Helm

      Hey Voy, I should have clarified that statement. It’s not that I thought Sullinger was the best option for the Raptors at 8, rather I meant that if a player some thought would be taken before the Raptors chose (at 7) is now out of the picture, it greatly decreases the pool of players the Raptors (and more importantly, Golden State) can choose from. I was already lukewarm on the 8 spot, it’s just that I’m now cold on the pick without Sullinger to eat up the 7th pick (or higher).

      • voy

        Ok. Looking forward to more of your articles, Dave, and throwing opinions back and forth.

      • Thetruth

        David, appreciate the article. There is just no way Sullinger was going to go higher than 7th. No mock draft board out there had him higher than 7th. And even 7 was a reach considering the Warriors are desperately in need of a SF (so they are trying to trade the pick) and have the gigantic contract of David Lee starting at PF. 

        Frankly speaking, in the most extreme of scenarios, the Raptors would have had only one less player to choose from in an extremely deep draft. Almost every draft in the last decade has an All-star caliber player drafted in the 7-12 range (even the super weak draft of 2008 had rudy gay drafted at 8).

        • Thetruth

          sorry i meant the super weak draft of 2006. Typo.

          • David Helm

             Hey Thetruth, I feel slightly weird attempting to negate the truth, I feel like I’m destined to fail. On to your points; I think Sullinger could have been in play from the at or around when the Raptors picked, and while his absence might not be devastating to their draft plans, it’s at least detrimental. As to your assertion that an all-star caliber player has been selected in the 7-12 range every year, you’re almost certainly right, but it has almost no bearing on this draft. The fact that quality players are often chosen in that draft range gives the Raptors pick value. What I’m arguing is that the perceived value of the pick (something that might yield a future all-star) greatly outweighs the actual value of the pick (more than likely Damian Lillard or Jeremy Lamb).
            If you believe that the value you could get by trading that pick (either up, down, or for a vet) outweighs a middling prospect like Lillard or Lamb (as I do), then trading the pick seems like the best option. There’s another article tomorrow where I attempt to explain myself a little bit better, as it appears as though I might not have done the greatest job in this one.
            Either way, thanks for reading and appreciation.

            • Thetruth

              hey david. thanks for the response. 

              I would absolutely agree with you on the perceived value of the #8 pick if it weren’t for the fact that there are at least 5 other lottery teams that are actively seeking to trade their pick for a young vet (Golden State, Sacramento, Charlotte, Portland, New Orleans #10) and could potentially put together a much more attractive package than we could. 

              I also think that you are overlooking the potential of Dion Waiters. The guy could become a legit 20 ppg scorer, the questions around him are related to his size, defense, and potential character issues. But I think he could be a great fit on the raps and tremendous dollar value since he is on a rookie-scale contract. All I’m trying to advocate is that I wouldn’t want us to sacrifice our hard-earned cap flexibility on bringing in a young veteran like rudy gay (who should have torched the LA Clippers. Seriously, no one on the clippers could guard that guy. They threw Nick Young on him and he struggled. Not to mention his enormous contract) or Iguodala or Deng. I’m sorry I just fail to see any moves out there that would significantly improve our team or shorten our timeline to become contenders. 

              I just think Colangelo has a great eye for drafting talent and he may be able to draft a player at #8 who could develop into a great player 2 years down the road. And let’s face it, there is no amount of moves that is going to turn us into a contender within the next two years.

              Thanks and I look forward to reading your article tomorrow.

  • voy

    i think there could be alot of good players in this year’s draft.  however, i think alot of the “its been the deepenst draft in forever” sentiment is a result of last year’s thinking that drummond, lamb, pj3 and anthony davis could all have been potential number 1 picks.

    • Tesla

      Agreed. When you look at it, this draft isn’t very deep at all IMO, it’s just that the first seven or so picks can turn out to be stars and the rest… meh. This is of course in contrast to last year’s draft where there were even fewer star-like players.

    • sleepz

      +1. You can add in H.Barnes into that mix as well.

      I still think that at #8 you can get a good to possibly star player. This draft will yield a few of them and they won’t all be picked in the top 5 necessarily.

      Have the Raps done their homework and can they select one of these players?

      Time will tell. 

  • Raps FTW

    We need to draft Perry Jones. Even if he cannot make a contribution right away he’s the type of player that will blossom with time and has the potential to be a superstar.

    • Tesla

      I support this.

    • Thetruth

      Perry Jones is going to be the type of player that tantalizes you in a contract year before you give him a huge contract and end up regretting it for four years.

    • Bendit

      What has he done to date in his collegiate tenure and even the draft workouts to warrant such confidence? I keep hearing about this elusive “potential”. All in the draft have it. Is it measurable? If it is, those more in the know than most on this forum think he is a much lower pick.  

    • pran

      perry jones has mediocre ball handling skills, doesn’t effectively use his size, and with all that atheticism I have yet to see him blow past anyone (slow first step), he has a nice jumper though. I have my serious doubts if this kid can play the 3. leave him the fuck alone.

  • CJT

    It seems to me that you have your logic backwards in this article.  There seems to be little difference between players from 2 – 10 or so.  Illustrated by the fact that there are aren’t any consensus picks at any position after Anthony Davis.  I don’t feel all that confident about trading for the guys that have been mentioned so far.  While they may be an upgrade compared to current talent, they are not game changing players. 

    • The Rub

       I disagree, from reading mock drafts and seeing what’s said about the players online it seems like there’s a clear break from 2-6 and 7 and lower.

      Almost all mock drafts have the same players being drafted 1-6, after that it’s a crap shoot of lower tier players (at this point, there’s no reason this draft won’t have a Rondo or Granger).

      • CJT

        We must be reading different things.  some have mkg going at 2 some at 5 etc.  no consensus at all.

        • The Rub

           Yes, but always in the top 6.  The top 6 is the top 6 in one order another, after that, it’s the rest of the crop.

          • CJT

            how do you explain Waiters being ranked anywhere from 4 – 12 in mocks?

  • Statement

    From Wages of Wins:

    “Before Baylor fans start sending me hate mail, let me start by saying that Quincy Acy is actually quite productive. Ok, now that that’s out of the way, Perry Jones is pretty bad. But, boy does he look like he’s good. Chad Ford praises Jones by saying he “runs the floor like a deer.” That sounds a lot like an aesthetic positive to me. I don’t care if a guy runs the floor like a rhinoceros if he can produce wins. But Jones runs like a deer and is not particularly good at shooting, rebounding, or creating possessions on defense. Yes, he’s super athletic and long. But to reiterate something I said in the comments of Part 1, there is no evidence that athletic guys or guys with great size improve more than their small, non-athletic counterparts early in their careers. The bottom line is that production in college is the best indicator of production in the NBA (not perfect, but the best). I’ll pass on Jones.

    Note:  Last year, their model flagged Kenneth Faried (good player).  This year, it’s flagging Jae Crowder.

  • Statement

    Also From Wages of Wins (last time I do this, as to not take too much space on the board)

    “What’s worse than a terrible lottery pick from Duke? A terrible top 5 pick from UNC! Barnes isn’t quite as bad as *shutter* Rivers or Teague, but he’s expected to go top 5 – a pick that teams will intentionally destroy their seasons to get.
    Barnes is everything a GM wants – he has great size, he is one of the most athletic guys in the draft, and he can score from anywhere (or at least that’s what they say) – except for one thing: he isn’t good…….And when you look deeper into his numbers, you see he’s not particularly good at anything”

    • Nilanka15

      I may just cry if we end up with Rivers.  He’s a poor man’s Fredette.

  • Andre

    Why are all the raptor bloggers saying to trade this pick? How does that make sense. Our team is lacking in the “talent” department. ARe you all serious? our team isnt one or two players away. We suck. and the way out of SUCKING is DRAFTING. Players to consider: Lillaird, Perry jones, Harrison barnes. Lamb isnt someone we want. why get a derozen light.. what would that do?

    I dont think ppl understand how DEEP this draft is. When Jared is dropping like a light pole and perry jones is dropping, this draft is deep. If the raptors are trading, they trying to get in a earlier pick. Wouldnt you love to see Andrea in a Portland jersey? Would you rather see him in ANY OTHER jersey then the raptors? Trade him for a first rounder. His experiment is done. Wheres the core everyone is talking about?

     

    • The Rub

       If this draft was actually deep every GM in the league wouldn’t be so desperate to try and trade out of it.  Charlotte (#2), Sacramento (#3) and Toronto (#8) are all hoping to find a buyer for their picks.  That’s never a good sign.

      • Seeten

         It is deep, its just deep with mostly similarly rated players, meaning #2 is as good as #6, which makes people less than thrilled to have #2.

        Thus, if you are interested in assets, you want to move #2 for an asset and a later pick, as later picks are just as good.

        • RaptorFan

          +1

      • RaptorFan

        dude….its just postering!!….dont believe everything you hear

    • Mos_jef

      Agree. What other teams is an 8th pick more valuable to? the raptors are still in rebuild mode. With another rookie, hopefully they’ll suck again this year and then get a top lottery pick next year. With Jose gone, they can afford to make a big splash next year.

      • BCStefanskiCaseyGots2Go!!!

        BC & Casey both said the REBUILD & BUILD is over at the season ending presser- are they not in charge???lmfao

        Get a grip on reality no matter how much you want the media hyped rebuild/build (BC’s excuse for all the current losing and fucking up the Raptors with his player transactions) to continue it’s over!!

  • Thetruth

    The idea that we should trade our number 8 pick simply because there are no talented players that fit the raptors rebuild plan is foolish. Lets’ be clear on one thing, we’re a 23 win team without a single all-star at any position. However, with that being said, Valanciounas is projected to be a star at the 5 so maybe he’s the exception. 

    But the premise of this article is that since medical doctors have issued a red flag concerning Sullinger’s back, all of a sudden the raptors have been negatively affected. Sullinger’s draft ceiling was 7 and there wasn’t a single mock draft on the internet that had him higher than Golden State but even Sullinger in Golden State was hard to believe since the warriors are desperate for a SF and they already got the gargantuan contract of David Lee filling the PF position. So basically, in the most extreme of scenarios, the raptors will choose from one less player on the board by the 8th pick in a deep draft. That’s not reason to panic and immediately call for trading the pick.

    Another point I want to mention is that the Raptors are just one among at least 5 lottery teams looking to trade their picks. Now, I don’t know about you, but besides Valanciounas, Bargnani, and maybe Derozan…the raptors don’t have any trade assets to move up. And fat chance in hell Colangelo is going to trade either JV or Bargnani in the final year of his GM deal.

    Almost every draft in the last decade has had an all-star caliber player fall in the 7-12 range so stop being so pessimistic. There is much better value in this draft than jeopardizing our cap space for a temporary band-aid by the name of Luol Deng or Andre Iguodala (if we even ever had a chance at acquiring them in the first place)

    • steve

       I agree but I do think there is at least a chance Bargnani could be traded.  He is coming off his best overall season and his salary is decent.  I think this would attract other teams.

      • Thetruth

        If you’re talking about trading Bargnani for another young veteran player that there are always opportunities out there. They are too many to explore in a short post. However, if you’re talking about trading Bargnani to move up in the draft, do you really like any player outside of Anthony davis to trade away Bargnani and lengthen our rebuilding process?

        • Thetruth

          Even getting multiple picks for Bargnani would still lengthen our rebuilding process by a good two seasons. No way Colangelo can afford that on the final year of his deal.

          • Thetruth

            And just one last thought, even if we could get acquire Rudy Gay would you really want to pay maximum dollars for a guy who   was contained by Nick Young in the playoffs? I mean, am I the only one who believed that Rudy Gay should have destroyed the Clippers since there is no one on that team that could guard him outside of an old beaten down Caron butler with a broken hand?

            Andre Iguodala may be an all-world defender but he averages 12.5 ppg and he is somewhat of a head case with a big contract.

            Luol Deng is injury prone and can barely create his own shot.

            Sorry but give me Dion Waiters and his potential along with our financial flexibility over any of the aforementioned band-aids… 

            • CJT

              Exactly right.  +1.  I would take the potential over a semi decent vet for sure.

          • Brain Colangelo

            Can’t trade Bargnani for picks, but could package him for a player who takes less off the table and picks. I disagree that trading him slows down the rebuilding process – any team that relies on Bargnani to be a top 3 player can’t win anyway.

            • Thetruth

              Which team in the top 7 would be interested in a Bargnani deal? 

              I can only think of the Wizards and maybe the Sacramento Kings. Is there any player on those rosters that you like to give up bargnani and the #8 pick?

              I certainly don’t think there is anything there to like.

        • steve

          I meant more the former.  Eg, Bargnani for Collison and their 2013 first round pick.  Or Bargnani + the 8th pick for …  etc.

          My comment was more in response to “And fat chance in hell Colangelo is going to trade either JV or Bargnani …” and my point is Bargnani is a tradable asset.

          • Thetruth

            Bargnani + the 8th pick creates a new hole at power forward that you’re going to have to fill as well as trades away arguably our best Raptor (and i am not a huge of bargnani by any stretch). Short of getting Dwight Howard or Deron Williams in return, you are essentially moving laterally at best with this proposal.

            I don’t mean to bust you btw. I’m just saying Bargnani + 8th pick or whatever proposed trades most raptors fans have are either unrealistic (because of Colangelo’s contract situation) or don’t really improve our team (example all the rudy gay, andre iguodala, deng proposals floating out there)

            • Thetruth

              Hypothetically, let’s say Charlotte offered you the #2 pick for andrea bargnani straight…would you accept that deal? 

              First of all there is no way charlotte would consider that deal (they need someone flashy to sell tickets) but at the same time, i don’t think there is a single big man in this draft that will be a better overall player than bargnani….

              • Thetruth

                Outside of anthony davis of course….

                And yes bargnani is a tradeable asset agreed but there isn’t any move out there that makes sense for him to move that will really improve our organization. Hence, keep the #8 pick, continue rebuilding and wait for the right opportunity to emerge

    • RaptorFan

      you are the truth dude!…..i shook my head (in disagreement) the whole time while reading this article by David Helm…..who cares about sullinger??…..i wouldnt take him (especially now that he has back issues)…..i say go for Rivers ….if Barnes falls then you have to seriously consider taking him

  • Konanas

    I agree with trading pick if we are going to get a proved player for it (not injured Deng)

  • Theswirsky

    The best option is to move the pick ONLY if it means trading up in the draft.  If not, then its the worst possible option for the Raps.

    If this team can’t move up, keep the pick, select the BPA…. position does not matter.  Fire Colangelo, trade Bargnani, trade Demar, start the rebuild.

  • Mark

    I am astounded by the ignorance of the Raptor’s management and its fans.  We have had great draft selection opportunities and have yet to draft one marqee player or sign any notable free agents.  This team is on a death watch and I think the Raptor Nation must understand this.  This team has no talent with the exception of a soft 7 footer that can only make set shots from outside when no one is guarding him.  We have fans that cheered like crazy when Lind hit a last second jumper to beat us.  We are a train wreck just waiting to happen.  We have no guts.  Not drive. No talent to take us to the next level.  I an truly sorry for Casey who came through a talent and tradition rich school at Kentucky to this mess.

  • Tonious35

    The Raps should try their damned best to get a another 2nd round pick or a late 1st round pick to pick up these “red flagged” players that dropped in the stands.  These news or rumors, or turn of events can make these players into late round draft dark-horses because it might act as a motivator and humble them.