This week on The Doctor is In with Phdsteve, I weigh in on why fans have a right to boo Andrea Bargnani and what must be done to make the bad man stop! In “Xs and Os, Jimmy’s and Joes” we talk about what may have been the best week of the season for Raps, even with the loss to Memphis and how you can really see the improvement and growth in this team.

Peeking “Inside Colangelo’s Brain” I give you all reasons why Colangelo did not make a deal at the deadline. Its hard to argue with BCs decision to stand pat but once again the other shoe has not dropped and I am still disappointed. And my brother Mike drops by to talk about went down in the top 25 over the last 7 days of college hoops. We breakdown the Indiana vs Mich State game, all the Oladipo hype and Chad Ford’s top 5 prospects for the NBA draft, including Brampton boy Anthony Bennett!

Grab the iTunes feed or the plain old feed. You can also download the file (37:57, 9 MB). Or just listen below:

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  • Theswirsky

    “Weren’t alot of chips for Colangelo to deal from”

    – Teams would have wanted Amir, Ross, Derozan etc and the Raps can’t afford to give up those peices.  First round pick not available for trade.  No cap flexibility.

    And who created that scenario?  Fans shouldn’t get upset at Colangelo for being unable to make a big deal, a necessary deal, because he had no chips he could (or afford to) give up, when HE WAS THE ONE WHO CREATED that scenario?

    Don’t get upset with the gambling addicted drunk who doesn’t try to find a job and mooches off the social safety net.  He needs it.  He has no money! 

    -he should have taken advantage of even the remotest of possibilities that a GM (other than himself) would believe in Bargnani’s 13 games
    – he never should have chased Nash, let alone burdened the team with Fields in an attempt to prevent NY from getting Nash
    – he never should have attempted to ‘upgrade’ the PG position let alone sacrifice the teams most valuable and necessary peices (a lottery pick)
    – he never should have prematurely payed Derozan to a wasteful contract
    – he never should have sacrificed this teams next two best assets (Jose’s expiring and a quality rookie scale big man) for the right to over pay Rudy Gay and financially hand cuff this team.

    But here we are.  At best a mediocre team with no valuable or available assets, with no superstar or way to obtain one, who will most likely be a tax paying team for the next few years.   The result of him thinking 13 game Bargnani was anything other than a mirage, and therefore he could accelerate the rebuilding of a team, leading to a series of unfortunate and franchise castrating events.  Perhaps not so coincidentally with his contract otherwise expiring soon.

    Haven’t we seen this movie before?  Oh yes thats right – the 2009-10 Toronto Raptors.  Just with a few different faces  

    Now the best thing for this team now is to NOT make the playoffs this year so OKC gets their pick and Toronto by default gets back a future asset.  Trading Ross and/or Val may become a necessary evil so the team can upgrade in the short term while hopefully eliminating a contract burden (Fields/Derozan/Bargnani).   The only silver lining is the amnesty of Bargnani is still available – but what are the chances, after all these years, that Colangelo sucks it up and admits Bargnani was mistake and a failure? 

    Fans shouldn’t blame him for not making a move? Nah, fans should precisely blame him for not being able to make a move because he’s the one that handcuffed this team into a position where he couldn’t make necessary moves.

    • raptors phdsteve

      Hard to argue with that!  I agree with almost all of what you said, except, I would amnesty Kleiza since thats a contract you cant trade.  You can still trade Bargnani and there will be a much larger market for him this summer, when there are 29 teams looking for answers.  Not saying you will get  a lot back, but from people Ive spoken to around the league,  you’d be surprised how many GMs would love Andrea on their team- its much higher than you think.  Also, I dont necessarily think the future is as bleak as you are suggesting.  It all depends on the next move.  The team, as is, is good but not good enough.  With a solid next move, this team can compete (there are pieces here).  With a poor next move, this team will be exact where you describe  above. 

      • Nilanka15

        I guess it all depends on how you define “compete”.  I agree that with a solid next move (that involves getting rid of Bargnani and DeRozan), we could improve on the existing core of Lowry, Gay, Jonas, Ross and Amir (maybe even Fields), which would bring us to a 50-win team at the absolute best.

        But here isn’t a single realistic scenario that sees us bring in enough talent to knock off Miami, so our ceiling is set at the conference finals for the foreseeable future.  If that’s what we consider “competing”, so be it.  But we’re not talking about competing for a championship.

        • Beaverboi

          I know the goal is to compete with the Miamis of the league, but realistically, is it even remotely possible to acquire that kind of talent?

          • raptors phdsteve

            Realistically, you have to get lucky to score that kind of talent.  Lucky with Ping pong balls and/or circumstance.  You have to be lucky to win the lottery (see Chi getting Rose or Sea getting Durant- both of whom jumped way up by the luck of the ping pong balls) and you have to be lucky enough to in it at the right time  (see Tor getting Bargs or Clippers entire draft history)

            You could also get lucky by a trade, like LAL when Memphis basically gifted them Pau Gasol or Miami when the Lakers decided to cut ties with Shaq.

            Free agencyis possible but still here you need luck.  Even for Miami, they had a bit of good fortune in that Lebron and Bosh were willing to take less to come to play with Wade and that all3 ended up as FAs at the same time and that MIA was able to clear the cap space to make it happen.  Cap space isnt enough, just ask Chicago who until they got D. Rose  tried for years to lure FAs to chi with cap space- or even Orlando who cleared space to sign McGrady, Hill, and Duncan at the same time. 

            So for the Raps, they have some good pieces but a bold move  (or a couple of bold moves) and some luck will be needed to get to the level where they can compete for titles.

        • Theswirsky

          “bring in enough talent to knock off Miami”

          Or Chicago, or Indiana, or Brooklyn.  And what about other up and coming teams and currently better teams? A healthy Philly?  Milwaukee?  NY?  Cleveland in the coming years?  Even Detroit has some extremely good young guys and tons of cap space this offseason. 

          There is alot more than Miami for this team to beat.

          • Nilanka15

            Maybe it’s the rose-coloured glasses, but I think Lowry, Gay et. al (with a full season together) could hold their own in a 7-game series vs. any of those teams you mentioned.

            • FLUXLAND

              Nilanka!  Seriously, bro. Just staaap it!  I know you’re starved for wins and playoffs, but c’mon!

              How do you ignore the fact these are players who were discarded by teams with better odds for success?

              • Nilanka15

                lol, I’m not going to say that we’re a lock, but I’m willing to play it out and see how things unfold.  I see potential in the Lowry/Gay tandem.

                I don’t know if I like the word “discarded”.  Lowry clashed with McHale, and Morey chose to side with McHale.  We haven’t seen any of Lowry’s perceived ego disrupting the Raptors so far, so perhaps it’s a win-win scenario where both teams benefit.

                Gay was purely a salary dump.  Yes, his percentages show ineffectiveness, but there’s no denying his impact on this team so far.  His contract is just ugly (like many on this roster already).

                It was mentioned in the forums that the Raptors are basically winning at a 60% clip lately.  Expanded over a full season, and that’s roughly 49-50 wins….which is a pretty solid team.  Championship calibre, no….but pretty solid nonetheless.

                Now I realize it’s a small sample size, which is why I’m willing to wait it out to see if it’s just a mirage, or if we’re on the verge of climbing into the East’s top 5.

                The 17 years of losing has made me realize that this is as good as it’s going to get for Raptors fans 😉

                • sleepz

                  Lately they have been playing at a 60% clip, however you know you are looking at a small sample size. They could very well lose the rest of their games this week and they are a .500 team with Gay. What happens if they end up playing .500 ball or less the rest of the way? I like to look at the season as a whole and while I don’t think there is anything wrong with trying to be optimistic but presently constructed, this teams ceiling is low.

                  I understand that as Raptor fans it’s been tough for a long time but the whole “this is as good as it gets” attitude is not cool my friend. Loyal and devoted fanbases deserve far better than what Raps fans have had to endure during BC’s reign.

          • Guest

            You know, this line of thinking occurs pretty much every year, and it never ceases to amaze me.  Every year, it’s a different set of “upcoming teams,” “currently better teams” and “finally healthy teams,”  except that every year, for every team that is finally healthy, another team falls to attrition.  For every “upcoming team” that makes it, a “currently better team” falls from grace.

            After the 2009-2010 season, Milwaukee was viewed as having arrived as a strong contender for years to come.  They failed to make the playoffs the next two years, and are sitting on the bubble this year. 

            After the 2010 off-season, many on this site speculated that the Nets had made sufficient off-season moves to get back into the playoff picture, despite only winning 12 games the season prior.   Though much improved (relatively speaking), they missed the playoffs by a longshot.  Then they acquired Deron Williams and once again, many on this site lamented that the Nets had vaulted way past the Raptors.  They finished the season one game behind us.

            Before this current season, many on here viewed the 76ers as a definite lock for a top six playoff spot.  They’re currently not even a lock for a top nine spot.  A few even had the gall to suggest that the Magic would still be a .500+ team after their off-season moves; they were wrong.  These are just some of the examples that come to mind without going through all the past predictions.

            Yes, this team had injuries and that team’s players didn’t perform up to expectations.  The reason/excuse honestly doesn’t matter.  The only thing we need to worry about is that OUR team continues improving and heading in the correct direction.  This idea that everyone else is getting even better is illogical.  For every team that improves, another regresses.

            • Theswirsky

              I’m not saying EVERYONE is getting better, but you also can’t ignore that other teams are getting better aswell.  That its not just Miami this team is competing against.

              And ofcourse other teams can regress, but I’d also point out that INCLUDES the Raptors.

              Now I’m not sure who these people are that made claims like the Nets were a playoff team a couple years ago or Milwaukee was a contender – maybe they were the same ones who thought the Raptors were a playoff team…. but no matter.  There are other teams getting better and attempting to get better.  Teams that will make big unexpected moves. Teams that will have players get injured and come off injuries.

              Success, in terms of wins, playoffs etc, for the Raptors is not based of just how much they improve.  Its how much they improve vs the league (and specifically the east).  

              This has been the problem for the Raptors, and lowered expectations in general.  Only comparing how ‘good’ the Raps are vs how ‘good’ they have been.  Not how ‘good’ they need to be.

              Unfortunately you don’t play yourself in the playoffs.

              • Guest

                “And ofcourse other teams can regress, but I’d also point out that INCLUDES the Raptors.”

                You need to read more closely, because I already covered this.  I did say the key is in whether or not we improve, not whether or not you or I or someone has the opinion that we have improved, so your “point” is moot.

                And I can assure you the people who made claims about the Nets, Bucks, whoever, etc., were definitely NOT the ones with rose-colored glasses when predicting the Raptors chances. That makes no sense when the context was that they made the same claims you did.  Yes, the Raptors did not do very well either, but I’m talking about the overall landscape of the NBA (or at least the East), and not from any particular team’s viewpoint.

                When you start your reply with ” but you also can’t ignore that other teams are getting better aswell,” it’s clear that you’re missing the point.  It’s irrelevant that certain other teams are getting better in your view, because when the next several seasons come to a close, your forecast will most likely be incorrect (though you won’t care enough to own up to it).  A team you felt was on the rise will still be stuck in the cellar for whatever reason, and there will be some excuse for why that happened.  A team you felt would be ahead of us will crumble, and you will blame it on injuries or someone demanding a trade or leaving during free agency.

                It’s a zero sum game.  If a team improves by adding a player, another team will undeniably regress by losing that player.  If a team improves organically due to its young players gaining another year of experience, another team will regress organically due to that extra year of age on its players.  It’s not that hard to understand.  Bookmark your theory that the rest of the league is improving and come back to it at the end of each season for the next couple years and you might see what I mean.

                • Theswirsky

                  Here is your conclusion from above

                  “The only thing we need to worry about is that OUR team continues improving and heading in the correct direction.”

                  The fact of the matter is the Raptors need to not only improve to catch up to those ahead of them,  but also improve at a rate greater than others (specifically the east) around them.

                  The reality is that not all teams above them will get worse, and not all teams below them will stay the same.  They will not only need to “catch up” to teams that are already better than them and who do not regress or regress much, but also improve at a rate equal to or greather than the other teams around them that are also improving.

                  Thereby the Raptors “just improving” is not enough. This team could ‘improve’ yet actually get worse in the rankings.  Thats not even getting to the point  Nilanka was talking about (ie. a possible eastern conference finals game)

                  (By the way, while the NBA as a whole may technically be zero sum, the Raps need to compete within the east and win against individual teams.  The eastern conference itself is NOT zero sum as it can take players, resources and wins from the west. While playing against individual teams, it matters which side the Raptors end up.)

      • sleepz

        When you say the team as is, is good what does that mean? What is their ceiling in your opinion? Is being a 7th or 8th seed in a weak conference good? Is being 9th or 10th place team in your conference (which imho is where I see this team, as is, the next few years) good?

        When you are reffering to ‘the next move’, do you mean getting a star on the roster (like Gasol for instance)? I haven’t been able to listen to the podcast yet as I’m at work but what type of next move are you talking about that allows this team to compete? And compete for what I might add? Playoffs or are we talking about building a team that competes for division titles, conference championships, and eventually chips?

        I think with or without a move there is a strong argument to be made that there is not much room to do anything to improve the team, and that any growth will have to come organically with the younger (JV, Ross, DD) players already on the roster.

        • raptors phdsteve

           I like the questions you’ve raised here and I think I’ll touch on them all next week on the podcast.

          • sleepz

            I’m looking forward to it.

            Might have a few more questions after listening to the podcast tonight. : )

      • Theswirsky

        Kleiza is an amnesty candidate I agree.  But he will be expiring next year and only frees up 4 or 5 mil in space.  Where the Raps are financially right now thats rather insignificant as anything other than saving MLSE some tax dollars.  The marginal return for amnestying Bargs over Kleiza is huge.

        As for GMs who would ‘love’ to have Bargnani on their team, just look to your previous statement (“not saying you will get a lot back”).  At what cost do they ‘love’ Bargnani on their team?  From all the rumours that have come up so far they only seem to love him enough to give up bad players or bad contracts.  Perhaps a better way to put the Bargnani situation is they wouldn’t so much ‘love’ to have him on their team, rather they’d be interested in giving him a chance if they can unload crap to do so.   I’ll believe Bargnani can actually return something good when I see it, until then I’ll stick with my belief Bargnani has negative value as a player and an asset.

        ‘Bleak’ is a matter of perspective.  If someone is just happy with the team making the playoffs then its not bleak. Without any significant downgrades to this team or significant change in the east, the Raps are likely to be a playoff team next year.  However, if the hope is to become something more than just another random playoff team, then yes I’d say the next number of years are bleak (and more beyond that when the team rebuilds).  Sure ‘the next move’ could change that, but thats the problem.  The Raps don’t have a ‘next move’ to make, without making additional long term sacrifices, because of everything Colangelo has done this year.  His moves this season, leading up to and ending with the Rudy Gay deal, finalized that.

        Other than random unsupported statements that other GMs actually desire Bargnani (nothing personal but thats how I see your statement, much like others have stated in the past – Eric Smith, Doug Smith and ofcourse Colangelo himself – without any results or even rumours to back it up) while MLSE/Rogers/Bell simultaneously are willing to spending DEEP into the tax for years (something there is again no evidence of unless one wants to believe the Jays, a different team, in a different league, in a different situation, within a different economic system, with only one of the above as the sole owners and providers of their content, is some how comparable or evidence).   Toronto’s best hope to be more than another random ‘playoff calibre’ team, is Ross/Val. 

        1) Either trading them to improve in the short term and going full out win now mode, or 2) they make a significant jump in play.  (And ofcourse managing to do so while getting limited on court experience). 

        I personally don’t like 1) although it may be necessary.  And I don’t see 2) as likely (both in terms of them changing in the short term or becoming the top end quality this team needs). 

        As far as I’m concerned everything else is just the same false hope people have bought and sold as optimism thanks to Colangelo’s ability to lower expectations.


        • Guest

          “The marginal return for amnestying Bargs over Kleiza is huge.”

          Please back up your statement.  As far as the upcoming season is concerned, neither player (being amnestied) will affect much more than tax considerations.  Where is this “huge” marginal return you speak of, when we will either be at the cap, or (best case scenario) not far enough below the cap to sign anyone for more than the biggest MLE.

          • Theswirsky

            Kleiza –  4.6 mil next year

            Bargnani – 10.7 mil next year, 11.5 mil the following year.

            Already a huge difference in pure $s.

            So the details (because we don’t really care how much MLSE spends except how it effects the cap)

            Toronto salary as stands next year:

            74 mil 

            Following year

            61 mil (for only 8 players – and no contract for Lowry yet or considerations for draft picks).

            Luxury tax currently stands at approx 70 mil – Salary cap 58 mil.

            Kleiza takes toronto below the luxury tax next year (1 mil).  Bargnani takes them 6 mil below the luxury tax.  So amenstying Bargnani gives them more space to make a move (specifically trades) while staying below the tax next season. 

            The year after,  having amnestied Kleiza offers NO benifit.  In fact using the amnesty means no longer having the opportunity to amnesty Bargnani (or Amir should the team go that route) so it in fact costs the team that opportunity – although I’m sure people will have difficulty understanding that.  While an amensty of Bargnani brings the teams payroll down to just below 50 mil.  (ofcourse this is before additional moves that are bound to happen)

            Now the salary and luxury caps may move up each or either year, but amnestying Bargnani will always offer 6 mil more next year and 11.5 more ‘space’ over Kleiza.  There is the possibility, although remote, that if Toronto amnesties Bargnani, the salary cap moves up the next two years AND Colangelo doesn’t take on additional contracts, the team could be below the cap threshold.  Remote, and the team would likely not improve talent wise, but a possibility.

            That doesn’t even get into exceptions based on where the team’s salary situation, stepping into the tax and therefore towards “repeater” status or Kleiza’s expiring contract offering value next year.

            So again, the marginal return of amnestying Bargnani over Kleiza is huge.  Not only pure $ cost, but for the team to have the ability to make moves.  Yes they don’t have alot of flexibility either way next year, but amnestying Bargnani offers  some next year (in terms of the the tax level) and ALOT more the following year.

            The only reason to amnesty Kleiza instead of Bargnani is because some magical move comes along where Bargnani can actually be traded. 

            • Guest

              You missed the point.  Your contention  was that amnestying Kleiza would only save a couple million dollars and its only impact would be tax considerations.  My point is that amnestying Bargnani, despite saving several million dollars in addition, would STILL only impact MLSE’s wallet next season.  Yes, we will have Bargnani off the books the season after, but trying to predict our financial landscape and what moves we might or might not be able to make more than a season ahead is a fool’s game, not to mention we want to improve THIS off-season and not NEXT off-season.  Sticking with something more proximate and more realistic to model, let me put this in practical terms for you:

              Amnestying Kleiza puts us at ~$67.5 mil payroll next season, with only 11 players signed.  Amnestying Bargnani puts us at ~$61 mil payroll next season, with the same number of players signed.  Either way, we will likely only have access to the same sized non-taxpayer MLE ($5.15 mil), as well as the usual smaller exceptions.  The only way to improve our team would be via trades, as you suggest, except under your proposal, we would have Kleiza instead of Bargnani as trade ballast.  How much or whether or not Bargnani might fetch value in a trade is another topic altogether, but we can be certain of the following:

              – You usually have to give value to get value
              – Helping another team save money/get out of the tax is the easiest way to get value without giving back value
              – Teams are far more likely to move large contracts instead of small, affordable ones (i.e. rookie scale contracts) to achieve their financial goals

              Taking the above into consideration, it should be obvious that if Bargnani was amnestied, we’d have a much harder time making the numbers match.  It would be akin to trying to acquire another Gay with say Ross and the likes of Kleiza, Lucas, Gray, etc.  Maybe you could find enough to match Gay’s salary, but the receiving team would not be very interested in having to waive several guaranteed salaries just to make the trade work (you need to have enough spots open even if you plan to simply waive the incoming players later).  Since we’re apparently all in with the Gay acquisition, getting rid of potential trade ballast only limits the players we can take back in return.

              • Theswirsky

                No Guest, you missed the point.

                Kleiza contract is expiring, Bargnani’s is not and twice that of Kleiza.

                So amnestying Bargnani offers ALOT more to this team than amnestying Kleiza. 

                “Your contention was that amnestying Kleiza would only save a couple million dollars and its only impact would be tax considerations”

                Exactly.  There is no net benifit to amnestying Kleiza other than the tax money saved (his contract is still payed, just doesn’t count towards the cap, and it changes nothing in the way of exceptions – therefore the team is actually just saving paying tax $s).

                • WhiteVegas

                  Why won’t it read?

        • raptors phdsteve

          2 things, first, Colangelo would never amnesty Bargnani, that just doesnt make any sense since he can trade him for some assets (maybe not as much as BC would like us to believe- but the guy is still a good player and has value). If you amnestied Bargs he would be signed almost immediately.  Second, your desire to amnesty Bargs is purely emotional based on how you feel and that is precisely the same problem we have had with BC’s decision to not trade Bargs for the last several years.  Its time for both fans and management of this team to be sensible and make sound decisions for the short and long term.

          I also think your point about lowered expectations is wrong. This city (and that includes both fans and management) has long thought its team is much better than it really is. But the truth is that as a franchise, this team has not made the playoffs since 2008 and has not made the 2nd round since 2001.  They have only 1 playoff series win in the franchise’s history and that was a 5 games series.
           Its not about lowered expectations, its about accepting reality.

          • Theswirsky

            “your desire to amnesty Bargs is purely emotional based ”

            lol and how do you decipher this? 

            Based on the complete lack of evidence that he is actually an asset, a ‘good player’ and has value? 

            The baby is already out of the bath water. Its time to drain the tub not think someone else will buy the water.

            “But the truth is that as a franchise, this team has not made the playoffs since 2008 and has not made the 2nd round since 2001. They have only 1 playoff series win in the franchise’s history and that was a 5 games series. Its not about lowered expectations, its about accepting reality.”

            I rest my case

            • raptors phdsteve

              Giving away an asset for nothing because you’ve had enough of them is an emotional decision.  He can be a 20ppg player when healthy.  To drop him for nothing doesnt make sense, regardless of how many times you post it 😉  I agree that Toronto and Bargs need to part ways and they will this summer when Colangelo has more options to move him.  Until then, we are all just going to have to live with  it.

              • sleepz

                I shouldn’t interject but what if the return is a bad contract?

                I would rather drop him for nothing then take on another bad contract. If you could get picks or a couple servicable players on smaller deals then I agree with you entirely but I feel like the return on a trade is not going to net as much as you think. 

                We’ve heard from BC how much teams around the league want to trade for him, yet when the time came the names we heard in rumors were B. Gordon, S Hawes, C Boozer, etc.

                Maybe there’s not a lot to the rumors but it’s a little bit concerning.

                Btw, many players in this league can be 20ppg scorers with enough shots and no expectation of defending or rebounding.

                I don’t think Andrea sucks, neither does he have an albatross of a contract, but I don’t think he’s a good player either and with the new CBA I have concerns that teams will not want to take on the contract of a stretch 4 that doesn’t help you in any way other than perimter scoring.

                • raptors phdsteve

                   Totally agree. 

                • raptors phdsteve

                   Except for the part that other teams wont want him.  Thats just not true.

                • sleepz

                  No doubt he would be highly coveted in the event he was amnestied but I’m not so sure at the escalating salary in his current contract

              • Theswirsky

                The team isn’t “giving up an asset for nothing”.  Its giving up a player where all the evidence is pointing to him being a liability as a contract (if not a player) and/or having little to no trade value, in exchange for future cap space.

                (as Sleepz mentions, what the team gets in return matters to.  Nothing can be better than something)

                What doesn’t make sense is talking about 20 ppg with no context (efficiency, rebounding, defense, effort, inconsistency, contract value) and assuming he is therefore an asset.


          • The Truth

            “he would be signed almost immediately”

            Yeah, for about half as much. That’s not a good reason for us to keep overpaying him for another two years, or more likely double down by shipping him for a player on an even more disagreeable deal.

    • sleepz

      You have to love Colangelo.

      Somehow, someway the biggest problem with this franchise always seems to
      find a way to stay under the radar.

      I’m truly amazed at how he has managed to keep the GM title for so long, with such little accomplishments to  point to.

      • Theswirsky

        I will give Colangelo this.  He is an excellent business man.  He knows exactly what people want.  Ofcourse in the long run, giving people what they need leads to a more successful business…… but its not as exciting.

        • FLUXLAND

           Me too. One cannot deny his ability to sell and resell after selling you shyte.


      Spittin fiyahh!!

      And some cretins (eleventeen year olds) are blasting the bloggers.  Jack has these kids brainwashed.

    • Postoffice

      that’s ok

  • raptors phdsteve

    thanks to everyone who took the time to listen and especially to all those who took the time to comment. One thing remains apparent and that is that Andrea Bargnani divides Raptors fans and the jury is out on whether or not Colangelo is the right man to fix this mess that he got himself into!

    See you all again next week!

  • Paul

    I love when Raptors fans laments the fact that the ceiling of the team might only be 50 wins and the conference finals.
    This team has never won more than 47 games and have never won a seven game series.
    Give me mediocrity any day over what we’ve been given the last 17 years.
    If this team had an Atlanta Hawks type run, they would be the most successful and popular team in the City. It’s sad but true.

    • WhiteVegas

      Right on. I don’t understand this championship or I hate the team mentality. A 50 win team is just a Lebron injury away from going to the Finals. 

    • Theswirsky

      “I love when Raptors fans laments the fact that the ceiling of the team might only be 50 wins and the conference finals.”

      and who is doing that exactly?  Nilanka was the only one to mention making the eastern conference championships and 50 wins, and I wouldn’t exactly say he is ‘lamenting’ this teams ceiling.

      • Paul

        “50-win team at the
        absolute best”

        “If that’s what we
        consider “competing”, so be it.”

        If this is not lamenting, then perhaps you can choose a more appropriate descriptor.  My point is that he is clearly not projecting this scenario in a positive light, when in fact, any Raptors fan should be jumping for joy at the prospect of 50 wins.
        And yes, I have heard numerous fans express their dissatisfaction with our alleged path to mediocrity. Many cite the Atlanta Hawks – the quintessential treadmill team – as a cautionary example. If that is mediocrity (45-50 wins and a second round out), then the Raptors have attained this level of success only once in our 17 year history. Any talk of the Raptors ceiling is premature at this point.

        • Nilanka15

          I was simply discussing the two apparently definitions of “competing”.  Everyone uses the same word to describe two very different scenarios.

          1. Competing for a championship

          2. Competing for the 5th-6th seed.

          • DumbassKicker

            Typical Nilanka backtracking: I didn’t say the words that that I clearly implied, I was just saying blah blah blah.

            • Nilanka15

              lol, grasping at straws as usual.

              Looking forward to calling out your next screenname.

        • Nilanka15

          I went on to say in a later post that a 50-win team is a “very good team”. 

          Just need to point out that such a team would not be mistaken for a championship contender.

  • Tinman

    Gotta be honest – always found you to be arrogant and usually way off base..
    Surprised they let you back

    • raptors phdsteve

      Probably not as surprised as I was to return!  But happy to be back and hopefully this time Ill be able to make some points that you find relevant and enjoyable.  Thanks for taking the time to listen.

  • KaioKev

    Tony Bennett plays NCAA basketball? I thought he was a jazz singer and an Italian-American. Weird. J/K

  • Roarque

    Thanks for the input phdsteve. I agree with your strategy for Andrea. What has the team got to lose by trying their darndest to bring him back to 13 games form. If Coach fails then the team pushes him out with a parachute, if the Coach succeeds then he’s declared a genius and Andrea gets traded for a major big who can’t score beyond six feet but CAN bang and rebound. That’s what this team (and every other team in the NBA) needs on their bench.

    This also gives Coach the freedom to let Jonas play until he learns to defend without fouling – Amir did and so can Jonas.