This here can path the way for Andrew Wiggins, or at the very least a reset back to January when Bryan Colangelo, in a fit of madness, acquired Rudy Gay.

I don’t even care to imagine what Joe Dumars is thinking, but I encourage him to continue thinking. There’s some complaints here that the Raptors aren’t getting any picks in the deal, and I say that’s just sweetener on top of a freshly baked muffin – you don’t really need it, but I’m sure we’ll get something if this does go through. Masai Ujiri has already unloaded Bargnani for more than anyone thought conceivable, but if he manages to execute this trade, he will have left the organization at a crossroads.

Villanueva and Stuckey make around $17 million in 2013-14, while Gay is at $18 million, followed by a $19 million option the following year. Once Stuckey and Villanueva come off the books, it would result in approximately $25 million in cap space for next summer. Keep in mind that next year’s draft is considered the best in years, with Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker featuring as headliners. I have no idea whether Ujiri plans to tank (that’s why there’s a poll on the site right now regarding this), but if he does, now would be the time.

I’m trying to think of a scenario where if this trade is executed, how the Raptors could put Charlie V out there and say with a straight face that they’re trying to win. It’s almost certain that a trade like this implies tanking, unless he turns around and flips these two for something else in the fall.

As awful as next season might be if this goes through, the season would have the potential to emulate the Spurs 1996-97 campaign when they went 20-62 and grabbed Tim Duncan. The draft is a crap-shoot at best, but you got to be in it to win it. And this would definitely put the Raptors in it.

Tim W. put it well here:

You think there’s a better chance that Gay and DeRozan will become good enough to make the Raptors a contender than of the team tanking and landing one of the 5 or 6 possible elite players that will be coming out in 2014?

Hard to disagree.

Here’s Chard Ford’s comment regarding team’s trying to tank next year:

The sheer amount of teams that are adopting this strategy is going to be staggering, and you can make a case that the Raptors will have significant competition for even a top seven pick, which might dissuade Ujiri from pursuing this option. At the same time, Ujiri has to be realistic as to what the already-tarnished image of Toronto would be after another horrid season, and what kind of free-agent that cap-space would attract. Does it make sense to make-do with what you have in Gay, or do we hit the reset button again, and risk doing it for nothing if the lottery balls are unkind?

Decisions, decisions, aren’t they what make life hard?




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  • David Bassily

    I gotta get my two cents on this before anything happens. There’s a chance that Ujiri takes this deal, a lot of people think its good for Toronto because Rudy gay is a low efficiency shooter and is getting paid up the ass. At the same time Stucky and Villanueva are expiring contracts that would clear cap space for next season. I’m hoping that this deal does not happen and that we keep gay. Numerous reasons, firstly if we cleared a bunch of cap space who would you sign as a FA, no one in the NBA gives a shit about the Raptors because they’re in Canada. Attracting a star is hard even if you have the money. You will no doubt have to over pay to convince him to come to Toronto. The way to undo this is to MAKE THE PLAYOFFS!! Toronto can’t switch countries but what they can do is try and make playoffs to at least have some people think we aren’t total dog shit as well as being Canadian. This year the east absolutely blows. I can see Atlanta, Boston, and Milwaukee not making playoffs. That means 3 teams that didn’t make playoffs last year could replace them, Philly just lost holiday and so guess who that leaves knocking on the door to the playoffs… us. Lastly, if the objective is to tank and get a good draft pick that is so fucking dumb. There are like 6 other teams tanking because next years draft is so good. But even if Toronto tanks, I can only see us getting like 13th in the east, no way we suck worse than charlotte and Orlando, plus the wizards suck as well so best case we get twelvth in the east and have like the 6th best odds at landing a first overall pick once the lottery rolls around. Then we get our 6th pick in a good draft and get a kid who is probably going to be as good as gay, but waste like 3-4 years developing him in the process. Anyone dreaming of getting wiggins is doing just that… Dreaming. He’s Canadian but there’s no way we manage to suck so much ass next year that we get the first overall pick or even a top 5. Best to try and round up the best team we can get now in order to get like a 6th seed in the playoffs and hope for a miracle run.

    • mm4

      this sums up my feelings so well. please please dont do this trade. we wont suck quite enough to get number 1 pick and we wont attract a big name free agent with the cap space.
      why are we considering throwing away our chance to make playoff basketball happen..?

      • If you can do this trade it’s a no brainer. DD, Lowry and Amir are all tradable assets and may net picks. You can’t tell me the Raptors, this early in the offseason, are “too good” to be one of the worst teams if that is Ujuri’s goal. To me he’s just trimming the fat on a brutally constructed team.

        • some random guy

          It may be brutally constructed, but Raptors have no ability in free agency, so talking about shedding cap space for the raptors simply means putting the franchise back 3-5 years. If your going to trade Gay, trade him for high potential or same calibre of talent that is locked in for a couple years.

          • Cap space isn’t necessarily about signing free agents. Oklahoma got a couple of first round picks with their cap space by eating a couple of contracts from other teams. Portland being under the cap allowed them to take Thomas Robinson off Houston’s hands for nothing so Houston could clear cap room.

            Next summer is a free agent boon and there are a number of teams that will be selling off assets to clear cap space. With the position the Raptors will be in, taking advantage of that would speed up the rebuilding process.

            • cd hall

              I see your point about taking on expiring bad contracts which means if you are trading an asset like Gay, you must be tanking!!! If true should it not be a priority to trade with teams that have 2014 first round picks due to the quality of players in 2014 draft?

              • It should definitely be a priority, but not a necessity. An asset is an asset.

                • ItsAboutFun

                  “An asset is an asset.”

                  But trading good assets for bad assets is stupid.

    • Copywryter

      No thanks. Lots of people south of the border gave a shit about the Raptors when we drafted Vince Carter. Back then we attracted FAs with no trouble. They wanted to play with a young superstar. Same goes for the drafted Chris Bosh, but to a lesser extent. Rudy Gay? Crickets.

      Making the playoffs is not the holy grail. It’s a red herring. It does not make us respectable. It makes us a first round exit. Do you think the Bucks, Hawks or Celts are something other than dogshit? They made they playoffs, though.

      Chasing the playoffs also lowers your ceiling because you’re only ever able to add B+ talent to the B talent that you’ve already got. Your cap is too high to land a real earthshaking FA. What you get is year after year of borderline teams that you try to boost with overpaid players while giving up picks. It is a chronic condition known in NBA circles as Colangelitis.

      “Hope for a miracle run”. – I don’t believe in miracles. That stuff is for the NHL (Kings). Not the NBA (Warriors stopped cold by the Spurs). I haven’t seen a team built your way ever get out of the second round. For me you’ve got to collect as many picks as possible and do your draft homework and take big risks to get big rewards.

      Yeah, there’s luck involved, but can you name a team that won a chip without a stud player that it drafted? Even Miami fits that description.

      • Bee

        If you wanna sit through another 5 year rebuild have at er bud!

        • Dagger

          The alternative is to be the Leafs of the last 10 years. Infinitely worse than making progress every year and building towards something great.

        • SR

          If you wanna sit through another 5 years of Chris Bosh-era Raptors seasons, then have at er bud!

          Raptors fans should be well aware of the futility of “giving it a go” with a roster that isn’t really talented enough for a deep playoff run. This team just tried that with a perennial all-star (a level of talent this roster doesn’t currently possess) and the most they accomplished was quick first-round exits. Yaay!

          One way or another, this roster needs a SIGNIFICANT talent upgrade. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that a little JV/Ross internal development and some nice on-court chemistry will take this team anywhere significant.

    • Vega

      The Wizards are actually going to be pretty good next season. They went on a tear last after Wall came back and this year they have the same core + Porter.

    • vino

      As it is proposed, without Detroit draft picks, this is a
      terrible trade for the Raps. I think everybody understands that. Why give away
      your biggest asset for free?? Isn’t it easier to simply announce Gay’s back is
      not 100% and shelve him for a season… if the idea is to tank?! I mean, by no
      means this is the best case scenario (shelving) from any perspective, but it is
      certainly better than giving him away for free to a Conference rival! The whole
      idea of trading Gay is to acquire draft picks. If Detroit does not have a first
      pick in 2014, that’s ok – we take their 2016 first and 2014 second, then work
      the magic of combining picks to move up! I am sure there is a better trade out
      there than Gay for two expiring contracts, either with the Pistons or any other
      team (Bobcats?! Kings that have just walked away from Iggy for four years?!).

      As for the general poll of whether to tank or not… I just
      have one question, what is the alternative to tanking? Can anybody seriously
      see this team (plus a backup PG and PF) competing with Miami, Indiana, Chicago
      or Brooklyn?! Really?? I’d argue that this team “as-is” – 8-6 seed. With an internal growth (of JV
      primarily) maybe 5th seed in a couple of years… but still not enough
      to seriously compete with the above four teams!
      So, do the people that are so against tanking (not this particular
      trade, as it is brutal, as announced!) see any other way to get significantly better?
      Cause I am curious…

      Oh one last comment, you don’t “hope for a miracle run”, as
      someone here has posted – you plan for it! Try going into a job interview
      “hoping for a miracle run” and see how many times you land that job.

      • Blake

        Maybe we are still only 6 seed with keeping the core, but you’d rather watch 82 games of LOSING opposed to at least getting in the dance and having a chance?

        Picks are good, yes, but with Toronto it is always in a few years!! Time is now! AND if we are going to be like the NY, Brooklyn, LA, like Lieweke said we won’t be selling we will be buying! Let’s see if they are all talk about being one of the big spenders. WHy the hell the fans care how much Gay makes? Ownership is one of the RICHEST in the league and own the TV stations Raps play on, I think the TV ratings will outweigh some luxury tax for ownership!

        • Dagger

          If you get into the dance with the team you’re imagining you have ZERO chance. This isn’t hockey. The Raptors aren’t going to win a playoff game against the Heat, Pacers, Knicks, Nets or Bulls next year.

        • SR

          How much fun was the Chris Bosh era? That’s the ceiling of this team – they’re a borderline playoff team that will be a quick first round out in the years they actually manage to get in. Personally, I’d put up with a couple seasons of crap to enter another Vince Carter-type era, as opposed to “working with what we’ve got” for several seasons of Chris Bosh-era outcomes. I actually like several of the guys on this roster, but I hate mediocrity. One way or another the Raptors need to move from having a “pretty good” roster (debatable) to having a great roster – I think that’s something we can all agree on.

    • Blake

      AGREED!! I’d rather lose in the first round than be another rebuild for 5 years making Toronto an even bigger joke! Let’s show the league we can compete.

      • Showing you can lose in the first round year after year isn’t showing the league you can compete. It’s showing your GM either doesn’t know how to build a contender, or is too scared to try.

        And if the Raptors rebuild right, it won’t take five years. Turning the current overrated and overpaid players into assets will speed up the process.

        • CJT

          Who said anything about year after year. Part of a building process is getting to the playoffs. Nothings says you can’t flip assests as you go for decent returns, picks, prospects and young talent. Certainly not for stuckey and CV.

          • I never said I liked the Gay for Stuckey and Villenueva deal. And the first part of any process should be finding a core you can see building around. If you think the Raptors have that, then we completely disagree. And the problem is that most of the Raptors “assets” are overpaid, thus lessening their trade value.

            • SR

              I agree with Tim!

              • onemanweave

                I agree with CJT!!

    • Dagger

      Okay, the worst thing you can be in the NBA is a mediocre team. It’s very difficult to improve from there, especially if you buy that acquiring talent through free agency is not an option. So you’re stuck in no man’s land for a couple years with no hope of contending, and then you need to blow everything up (like the Hawks will probably do now). In other words, we’d be right back where we are now, except a few years down the line. Is that what you want?

      Also, you’re really overvaluing Rudy Gay. He’s a talented player, but he can’t shoot and he doesn’t score efficiently, and he’s not a consistent defender. If you’re building around that guy, you’re building for a first round sweep every year the way the east is presently constructed. Do you think free agents would be more likely to sign with that team? Well, it doesn’t matter, because you probably wouldn’t have cap space anyway.

      What should happen instead: this city and the wealth of MLSE can attract high-level management, and we’ve seen that happen in the past year. Good management can then identify good draft picks, and those draft picks, in turn, can contribute to a good team. When you have 3 or 4 (or more) high first round picks developing on a young team, you have the potential to construct a championship-caliber core that ages together and, for a few years, costs very little. At that point you might be able to get prized free agents. It’s the blueprint followed by teams like the Spurs or the Thunder: elite teams in less desirable markets.

      Of course, Toronto is a huge market, and I’m not sure if I even buy the idea that free agents don’t want to sign here. Guys that are traded here often want to stay – Vince resigned, as did Bosh, and Gay wants to – and when they leave it’s usually because the team doesn’t win and the organization is rotten (as it was in the past). Turkoglu signed here as well by spurning Portland (if only he hadn’t). No, Lebron isn’t heading north any time soon, but I do think that the free agent issue is overstated.

    • Jamshid

      1) The latest news is that UM is not interested in moving Gay’s contract so that is that. We are going to compete next season and basically miss out on one of the best drafts of recent years.
      2) It still amazes me how Raptor fan over value their players. The type of player they think they should get back for Rudy Gay makes me laugh. What are you thinking ? What did we give last year to get Rudy Gay ? What did Rudy Gay do last season that you think his value has gone up so much ?

      • Ujiri is not interested in DUMPING Gay’s contract. That doesn’t mean he’s not interested in trading Gay for picks and/or prospects. The Detroit offer, as it was, wasn’t good. All it did was get rid of Gay’s contract and Gay should have more value than that. Would Ujiri turn down A Villanueva, Caldwell-Pope, Knight deal? Or even better, of he could get Anthony Bennett from Cleveland, I’m sure that would be enough to entice Ujiri.

        • Jamshid

          The question here is not if he would turn down a Villanueva, Cladwell-Pope, knight deal, The question is will he EVER get that deal ?? What is the REAL value for a contract that is 18 million this year and 20 million next year ?
          What did we give to get Gay that now we think we can get 2-3 young players in return ? I personally think Gay is a really bad contract but then again, we got picks back for AB 🙂 So there are idiot GMs out there.

  • Rap fan 2

    We don’t just want to get rid of contracts. We want 2014 1st round lottery draft picks. Multiple picks.

    • Great. Name me a team who will offer that for Gay of all players?

  • Marz

    This is a terrible trade. Yes, yes, you can talk all you want about tanking for the 2014 draft and the cap space this creates. But I’m willing to bet MU can do better than saving a few million dollars. In MU we trust?

  • KC

    i hope like hell this trade happens!!!!!!!!!!

    • Rap fan 2

      For Rudy Gay, I want Drummond and their 2014 1st round pick thrown in.

      • Scott

        No chance

      • If Ujiri got that deal, MLSE should hand him a lifetime contract to run the Raptors.

        • some random guy

          He would need it as this would set the franchise back +5 years.

      • Vince

        Dre is untouchable and the Pistons traded their 2014 1st Rd pick to the Bobcats as part of the Gordon-Maggette trade.

        • ItsAboutFun

          This is an example of how all the pie-in-the-sky tanknation people don’t deal in reality. They talk in generalities of dumping current assets, and accumulating what they feel are better assets, but fail to recognize that one needs cooperation from these other teams with the apparent more desirable assets. It’s all pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking generalities. If they’d provide some examples of the brilliant moves that they would make, perhaps we’d have something to discuss.

  • Albertan

    Acquiring gay was a poor decision to begin with. Shedding his contract is an intelligent option. Not the only one but we know he’s not taking us to the promised land. Time to start from scratch and build the way Colangelo promised

    • george resko

      Wow your uneducated about the nba. No free agent star would like to play in canada why would you gamble on getting wiggins rather then building around derozan, gay, and valanciunas. David lee would have fit perfectly and cap means nothing when your in the playoffs with gay and derozan playoff experience together will make them an amazing team in a couple years and other top teams are falling off. Heat depend on lbj too much and bosh and wade are inconsistent, allen isnt getting younger, brooklyn doesnt have championship depth, pacers crumble when you have options offensively, bulls are the same as last yr with the addition of rose who can tare an acl anytime he puts pressure on his knee, knicks are gonna lose jr smith and bargnani is not tht great of a pick up. At our worst were 8th seed. At best 3rd seed. We have lots of talent they just need a legit starting pf amir is more of a hustler off the bench

      • Gary73

        1. It has been confirmed that GS never offered Lee for Bargs, so why does everyone keep going back to that? 2. Besides, Lee is overrated, perhaps worst defensive forward in NBA.

      • Duncan


      • Bee

        Lee or no Lee this rant is SOLID and so true about the top 4!! Bklyn has 2 years max with this team, Wade is breaking down, Rose could break down that ACL, Pacers are solid but I think I remember Gay dropping a game winning shot on them in OT upon his arrival. They can be beatin!

        • ihatehaters

          Are you guys on drugs??

    • Blake

      Bet you weren’t saying that when he came in hitting game winners in his first few games in Toronto! We need a veteran closer, not hope that we pick a good player and he develops in 3 years…oh, and then he stays after his rookie deal.

  • george resko

    I was so excited about ujiri to toronto and colangelo left him in a good spot all he has to do is clean up some mistakes like our pg situation and ridding us of kleiza and bargs not come in and try to rebuild we have a playoff caliber team and david lee wud of put us over the top as a contender… lowry derozan gay lee and jv thatsan amazing starting 5 and we have fields who is very underrated becuz of scoring we have ross amir and any back up centre. We wud be deep with a good mixture of young and vets. Cap wudnt be tht big of a problem as we wud go 4 mill over when acquiring lee but then amnestying kleiza brings it back. Honestly jays and leafs are putting good teams together masai shud continue that. Villanueva is not talented enuff regardless of an expiring contract becuz he cnt ball and we wont be the only bad team. Theres the suns celtics sixers kings bobcats who are still worst then us

    • Scott

      1. David Lee 2. ??? 3. Contender!!!1

  • Cameron Becker

    Such as fascinating situation. I really can’t stand Rudy Gay, and it was a terrible decision to trade for him in the first place as he’s such an inefficient player considering the ridiculous contract, and combined with DeRozan, was just a brick making factory. But the concerns are really valid, as lots of teams will be indeed be terrible with their eyes on the upcoming top heavy draft, so there’s no guarantee they will get a top 7 pick and Toronto obviously isn’t a glamour free agent destination, would be tough to be in his shoes, but that’s why they pay him the big bucks, and i’ve loved what he’s done so far!

    • Scott

      I agree Gay is inefficient and all but that’s why we should keep Gay *to tank* the season. Seriously if he is our best player then that is a bad team. Trade Amir, and Lowry but keep Gay/DeRo. Who knows maybe one develops further & you can still trade them next trade deadline or offseason.

  • Bouncepass

    The only reason to make this trade is to hope that you can beat the other half-dozen teams in the tanking strategy. If you end up with the #5 or #6 pick, you will probably still be terrible for years to come. Having a bunch of cap space seems nice, but how will the Raptors be able to use it? They haven’t shown themselves to be capable of attracting top free agents (even Nash rejected the Raptors), so having cap space is no real benefit. The only thing they might be able to do is to use the cap space to take bad contracts along with some draft picks from teams on their way down. That is a 4-6 year strategy, so good luck keeping JV interested. If they trade a player like Gay, they have to get draft picks. Getting some cap space along with a crappy team isn’t enough.

    • If there are a half dozen other teams that are tanking, then definitely Toronto should do it considering scouts believe there could be as many as eight All Stars in next year’s draft. And if the Raptors draft 5th or 6th, that means one of Parker, Randle, Gordon, Harrison and Smart will be available. Sounds good to me.

      And if the Raptors get as many assets as possible for their current players, it’s not a 4-6 year strategy, Let’s say, for example, that Toronto is able to trade Gay for Anthony Bennett and Alonzo Gee. Then they trade Kyle Lowry to Sacramento for Carl Landry and Sacramento’s top 10 protected 2014 pick. Then trade DeRozan for Charlie Villaneuva and Caldwell-Pope. If the Raptors luck out and draft Wiggins, they already have lots of assets and young prospects (including Valanciunas, Ross, Bennett and Caldwell-Pope) they can either develop or use in a trade, PLUS have cap room to acquire more assets (either by taking on bad contracts in exchange for draft picks or trading for players with bigger contracts). In one year, the Raptors have improved their situation and outlook exponentially.

      • Bouncepass

        Yes, and “if wishes and buts were candies and nuts we’d all have a very Merry Christmas”. Seriously, some of those trades look like a serious long-shot. If they could get Bennett and Gee for Gay, then by all means go for it. But I find that highly unlikely. Also, Lowry for Landry and a 2014 first sounds great, but highly improbable. I don’t mind trading players for 1st round picks and good prospects, but the idea of just grabbing some crappy players with the plan of clearing cap space and tanking is a terrible plan, and disrespectful to Raptors fans. I wouldn’t put too much stock in scouts’ projections this far out. They haven’t really started to scout them carefully at a high level of competition. Remember when Shabazz Muhammad was touted as a future star? He ended up in the middle of the first round in a crappy draft year. Having said that, I think that Detroit is a good target for a trade, since they don’t have a draft pick this year. They will be in the “anti-tank” mode since Dumars will face serious heat if the 2014 pick becomes a very high lottery pick.

        • Those were simply examples of trades. Besides, did anyone think the Raptors could get what they did for Bargnani? I can see Cleveland possibly going for that Gay trade. Bennett doesn’t make sense on their roster, unless they think he’s a small forward, a position they are severely lack. And Cleveland wants to win now. I’m not a huge fan of Gay, but he helps them achieve that more than a 20 year old rookie does.

          As for the Sacramento trade, I meant to say Hayes, not Landry (who plays for Golden State). Hayes has two more years left and barely plays, yet makes about the same as Lowry. Sacramento trades a useless player for a useful one with a shorter contract and who plays a position they are in need of. I think they believe they are going to compete for a playoff spot, so might be willing to trade their 2014 pick.

          There are few tanking advocates that I’ve read who just want to clear cap space. Most have the same idea I do, which is why few of us liked the Gay for Stuckey and Villenueva trade.

          • Dagger

            All indications are that Cleveland will pursue Lebron next summer. That doesn’t make sense with Gay on the roster.

            • I’ve heard that, but I think it’s a huge longshot. I had a Cavs fan say they’d agree to Gay for Thompson, Gee, Miles and a pick. If Raptors could get Cavs 2014 pick, I’d do it in a second.

      • ItsAboutFun

        That’s a lot of IFS, requiring 3 teams to cooperate with the “plan”, plus lottery luck, plus 4x crapshoot luck. Pie-in-the-sky wishfull thinking may be fun, but let’s not equate it too closely to reality.

        • EVERYTHING is a crapshoot. Trying to go ahead with the flawed roster the Raptors have right now and hoping they don’t end up becoming perennial playoff fodder for the good teams is a crapshoot. Assuming that you can upgrade the current roster to become a contender is a crapshoot. Hoping DeRozan makes a developmental leap never before seen by a player with his experience is a crapshoot.

          The reality is that the Raptors won 35 games last year and are not guaranteed to make the playoffs next year. The reality is they have no All Stars, their top scorers are inefficient, the players they run the offense through make bad decisions and they only have a few players who are above average defenders. THAT’S reality.

          • ItsAboutFun

            Well, some of what you say is “reality” is simply your opinion, but then you often get confused between your opinions and reality. You know was is absolute reality? Every year, high school phenoms drop in their standing when they get to college. Every year, college stars drop in their standing when they get to the NBA. Every year, star looking NBA rookies drop in their standing and don’t become near the star they appeared they would be. You keep basing your “tank at all costs” approach at your “reality” that there are 6-7 generational talents in the 2014 draft. History says that’s not reality at all, but is totally pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking.

            • Dagger

              What you call “wishful thinking” has been the foundation of every small market NBA success story for decades. Selling assets, clearing cap space, accumulating draft picks and developing talent. It’s just that simple.

              • ItsAboutFun

                If you want to deal in “just that simple” terms, far more teams have failed in that approach. Who are these “every small market teams” you speak of? Though they haven’t won yet, and got knocked out in the 2nd round this year, I count 1 OKC, and they achieved their super tank while having an owner who didn’t give a damn if fans bought tickets or not, because he was moving the team,,,, so a very different scenario than any other.

      • cd hall

        I like your thinking!!!!!!!Build ASSETS ASSETS AND MORE ASSETS!!

  • Dzoni

    People, Ujiri got us 3 picks back for Andrea freakin Bargnani and you want us to give up Gay for Charlie V and Stuckey!? Even if we are going for tanking next year I am sure there will be a much better offer for Gay. Let’s not sell for 10 cents on the dollar like we use to…

    • Rap fan 2

      Totally agree with you. He’s probably our biggest trade asset. I’ve seen him guarding Lebron and Carmelo and being really effective at it. He’s more than athletic enough to cover them one on one. I think the best thing when giving up Rudy Gay is to get the young up and coming players that fit into our playing style plus draft picks or players that you can use as trade assets that you can then make more trades with and acquire more pieces with and or draft picks with. I think Ujiri and his assembling team have better talent in using their scouting background to acquire the best players draft prospects. Love the way Houston did this in the 2012 NBA draft accumulating draft picks and eventually trading for James Harding. I think most of us thought what the heck is Houston doing trading away all their players for draft picks. I think building through the draft is how the NBA office has designed the NBA. Free agency is most effective when getting those last few pieces to add to your already talented and developed core players.


    It’s simple if you watch the NBA especially the playoffs you realize that the teams that are in it to win and the teams that are talked about and remembered from different eras are the teams that have STAR, franchise level players that they aquired through the DRAFT (even Miami and Boston have one elite level drafted player) period, end of story.
    Until we suck bad enough to draft one of these player we will NEVER get to that level. That guy who wants David Lee and create a winning playoff atmosphere is dreaming in technicolor. Reading those comments made it crystal clear you don’t know what you are talking about, look at GSW they are where you want to be getting eliminated in the first round, they will never win a championship with that team. If you think Derozan, Gay,and Lee are good enough you are tripping, if it was that easy anybody with money could put together a winning team.
    I want to have a team looked at like the Spurs or the Lakers and actually win. If you want to be like Golden State or the Atalanta Hawks all the power to you, I just hope Toronto has much loftier goal in mind and making moves like this is the first step.

    • Doug H.

      Actually, Golden State made it to the second round and beat a very good Denver team in the process – not that that proves anything about David Lee.


        That true my bad but the point is that its not a good idea to build on a foundation that will get you nowhere taking lee and adding him and his 44 mil will only lock us into being mediocre for another four years and the fact that the new regime is obviously not looking to add and build with what we have its a moot point
        What happened with GSW in the second round? Refresh my memory, I am just saying if you are happy to get no value veterans and just make the playoff every year we won’t win and I don’t want the raps(hopefully not the name much longer) to be just like the leafs for the next 20 years

  • WhiteVegas

    I’m totally fine with trading Gay, and I even think it would be a good idea, but this trade is crap. Gay should be able to bring back useful player(s) and draft picks, just like Bargs did, but better.


    Masai is going to try and get young cheap athletic players that will play hard and he is going to try and get them two deep at each position just accept it there is a new sherif in town

    There are five or six players in the next draft that all have at least the potential to be REAL stars, until we get a player at the level of Durant at the minimum we will have ZERO chance to win it all even OKC is having trouble winning with him and Westbrook. Open your eyes people we are trying to win a championship…


    Just look at the Pistons, ask yourself if you think they can win the whole league if they trade for Rudy Gay? It is almost a joke
    They have a promising young raw athletic center and a rookie wing prospect and a mercurial point guard that has skills but can’t put it together with one year left, sound familiar?
    Trading for Rudy puts them as close to winning as keeping him does for us.
    I like Gay as a player and was happy when we got him but the focus has shifted and having him during a rebuild is a waste of time and money and will probably be the one thing that cost us a shot at Wiggins…

  • One relaxed guy

    Decisions are what makes life interesting 🙂 I was always against the idea of tanking. It never seemed reasonable enough. But now… when Ujiri got rid of Bargnani and his big contract this offer comes in. Thing about Gay is that he’s still the best player in this roster and he’s the only guy who’s closest of being an actual star. That counts IF you’re targeting playoffs. In my opinion there is about dozen of teams in NBA who have worse starting SF than Gay is. So it’s not easy to have a very good SF. However I also think that the trade to acquire Gay was destined to be going nowhere. Because of his huge contract. Raptors either will have to extend him and pay him somewhere around 20 mil a year (after what he’s getting now no way he’ll agree on smaller contract and will try to shake Raptors down properly in new contract negotiations), or Raptors can choose not to extend him and let him out on a free agency, or trade him. And why not trade now when you can tank right before a very strong draft? Suddenly tanking seems like a smart idea. Raptors would get a chance to get rid of another even bigger contract (that way two biggest contracts of ~30 mil for this season would be gone) free up their salary cap space for next year’s free agency and have a great chance to get a good young talent. The only problem is that there’s going to be a lot of teams with the same approach this season and I don’t think there’s a lot of chance to get Wiggins. If Raptors would eventually get a top pick next year, I’d evaluate this approach as successful. If Raptors would consider dealing Gay I’m sure there will be other teams interested, not only Pistons. And it would be good to see a first rounder in that offer, I think it sounds reasonable. Ujiri can also trade Gay in order to get someone even better – that’s also an option. And btw, to my big disappointment. Clippers traded Bledsoe to Suns…

  • Amigo

    Oh boy, tanking the only time you can make the playoff easy. Then you go in 2014 draft night with 4th and 9th pick if you are lucky and get Chris Bosh and Demar Derozan. If not Patrick O’ (man) Bryant. GTFO

    Forget no 1 and 2. Draft night is rigged, nba needs Boston to win to Milk the Cow.GTFO

  • Dan

    Convince Detroit to take Landry Fields as well and add their 2014 and 2016 #1s, and I’d say we have a deal.

    • mountio

      Why not throw in Drummond while you are at it .. ??

  • Colonel_Hapablapp

    Awful big risk considering the amount of teams that are tanking this year.
    If we do go through with this trade, it’ll be a tough year at the ACC for Raptor fans. I’d rather they try and make a push for the playoffs, and deal with the consequences later.
    Even if it means being a regular 5-8 seed in the East for quite a few years, it would still help the team improve its outlook.
    It’s an easier pill to swallow, than tanking for 1 year, and not getting a good prospect in the 2014 draft to rebuild around. That would be a disaster for years to come. Could spell disaster for a lot of upper management, and the fanbase in general. Hurts image too.

  • Tee

    Oh sweet Jesus please don’t let this trade go through.

    Mark my words Masai and Tim L will lose their jobs if this “tank” thing doesn’t work.

    We might even lose the team in 4-5years.
    The raps wont make the playoffs for about 3-4 years…thats like 8 years total.
    Demar will want out and same with JV.

    I have trust in Masai; hes not an idiot.

    • onemanweave

      Tim W. will probably lose his as well.

    • Rap fan 2

      You can’t worry about losing your job. You have to be tenacious. Here’s a great movie quote…

      Once more into the fray…
      Into the last good fight I’ll ever know.
      Live and die this day.
      Live and die this day.

    • robertparrish00

      Totally agree, if you tank for 1 talented player…

      JV isn’t going to resign. No free agents will want to come if you are not in the playoffs. Back at square 1. Then a couple years down the line the 1 talented player bolts because the raps aren’t competitive.

      So lame.

      Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

      • Valanciunas’ is a restricted free agent in three years and an unrestricted free agent in four. The Raptors can easily trade Gay, DeRozan and Lowry for draft picks and prospects, tank this coming season and build up a promising team by then if Ujiri is a good GM.

        And as we’ve seen with lots of other players, simply making the playoffs year after year isn’t enough to keep your star talent. You need to build a true contender and the Raptors don’t have the pieces to do it now.

        • ItsAboutFun

          ” The Raptors can easily trade Gay, DeRozan and Lowry for draft picks and
          prospects, tank this coming season and build up a promising team by
          then if Ujiri is a good GM.”

          Please wow us with you brilliance of an example of how “easily” this could be done.

    • “We might even lose the team in 4-5years.”

      I’m sorry, but this is an absolutely ridiculous statement. Utterly ridiculous.

  • Ds

    The Raptors with Rudy Gay are a playoff team next season. But barely. The question we should ask ourselves is do we want to be a one and done team in the playoffs (or maybe win a round), or do we want to tank for a once-in-a-generation talent in the draft?

    I’d go for option 2, but I also want picks for Rudy Gay, not just sucky players… See what I did there?

    • CJT

      Correction, for a SLIM chance at a potential generational talent. We would have to be exceptionally lucky to make this tanking strategy work

      • FromDeep

        Wiggins isn’t the only elite player in this draft, he’s just the LeBron.

        • CJT

          Potentially. Haven’t seen him play a game against college level players yet. Nor any of the other “sure things””

    • Rap fan 2

      Look, it is not just about this draft. If you get lucky you’ll win it and get Wiggins. Every team wants to buy a ticket and have a chance to win it. I think the important thing is to get great talent then nurturing and developing it so that it is helping the team or using it as trade asset and continuing the cycle. The thing is spending money on coaches, trainers, dieticians, sports scientists, facilities and any other thing you can come up with to develop your draftee or other players on your team doesn’t go against the cap. I would spend maximum money in player development and max money in getting the best scouts out their. This is the way to get the most out of your players. This is part of the culture.

      • Rap fan 2

        One more thing, you want players who want to develop and get better day after day and are willing to work to get better. Just having talent is not good enough. Just look at Bargnani, he stopped developing his game in Toronto. I hear people trashing Demar’s game, however I don’t think anyone can trash his work ethic and his willingness to work and get better and develop his game. Jordan has always been known to come up with the unexpected offensive move. You have to work at developing that move. Getting drafted is just the start. The best players keep working to get better.

  • Blackjitsu

    With so many teams jumping on swords trading for 2 vets doesn’t even guarantee that the Raps don’t make the playoffs! That’s how bad the East is going to be! As the Bargs trade was leaked in NY who wants to guess which side broke this trade? For Toronto to dive they need to go REALLY young–like youngest team in the league young. It’s sad to say this but Stuckey is too good! And I think he sucks! CV, well, he’s CV…

    Needless to say, it would be a lot easier to turn players into assets by making a run at the playoffs…


    This trade is not good btw good possibility we can get something good
    This is just their first offer we will ask for more

  • some random guy

    So Toronto sheds Cap space and we have 25-30 million to spend on free agents. What great free agents are we going to be able to sign? Honestly, wtf? even if Toronto had 30 million to spend in cap with the current roster intact we couldn’t attract any of the big names out there this year. This would set the franchise back 3-5 years, especially with no draft picks involved.


    What Koreen just said makes sense we traded away a pick and a good looking( maybe only ok looking …) young guy in Ed Davis as well as an expiring deal can’t see us taking much less than that maybe if they throw in knight and a pick…

  • troopa

    Nah nah you guys are looking at it all wrong. The way to tank for the 2014 draft and get a top 7 pick is to keep Rudy Gay. Is Rudy Gay good? Yes. Is Rudy Gay good enough? No! Are the current Raps bad? Yes. Are the current Raps bad enough?? No!! Meaning Rudy Gay is a very good player and this team can and SHOULD make the playoffs this year with so many teams trying to tank this year, especially in the east (orl, cha, phi, atl if they don’t get DH12, bos will take a drop…) BUT we will never reach the top of the mountain with a team built like this. We could he stuck in 5th 6th 7th spot for awhile.

    Keep Rudy Gay for the season! Or at least until trade deadline. Let him prove his worth. Easily a 20pt avg on this team and teams will be drooling over him come midseason when they see what he can do with the team leaning on his back every game. And plus after this yr he will only have 1 yr remaining which will entice teams. And when the time is right.Then u trade him and whatever other tradeable assets we have and 2014 draft here we come and a start to something beautiful.

  • TheDowJones

    Taaaaaaank! Wiggins is top prize yes and it would be hard to win him. But history shows the teams with the worst records don’t win the lottery. Its the teams that have something to lose financially that win the lottery alla New Orleans and Anthony Davis (New owner so gift wrap #1 pick). The NBA wants the right players in the right situations for owners to make money but most importantly the NBA. Remember Chicago was a playoff team before they drafted Derrick Rose (also a Chicago native). Toronto would have just as good a chance to win the lottery next year as any other team, but it requires the team to go all in. You don’t win the lottery unless you buy a ticket no? And hey not like we haven’t won it before (Il mago in ’06). And that was as soon as Mr. Illuminati himself (Colangelo) took reigns on the team (conspiracy?). I don’t like this trade on account the players named wouldn’t crack the line up on a contending team. But the financial gain is a BIG plus. Get Rudy out of here but I would want a unprotected draft pick in return if Detroit is really aiming for the playoffs next year. Lastly on a different note. SIGN VINCE CARTER AND TRACY MCGRADY. Its not like they would sign at this stage of their careers, and their veteran NBA knowledge can be used to help grow DeRozan and Ross. That being said, I’m all in for tanking next year if the team is willing to do it right!

    • Rap fan 2

      I think it would be a great idea to bring Vince back into the fold. Sign him at some minimum veteran amount. It’s last chance for him to redeem himself to the fans and possibly have his number retired and elevated to the rafters.

      Having a few tickets or draft picks in lottery would increase their chances of landing Wiggins. Having a chance or chances is better than no chance. For example, if Raps ending up last and had only the one pick they would have a 25% chance of winning the lottery. That’s still a 25% chance to win as opposed to a 75% chance of not winning it. I congregate towards the cup is half full religion. Add another pick would only increase their chances of landing the top pick. Anyways, getting in on the 2014 draft and getting a shot at some of the top picks and developing them will move them towards that championship contending culture that MLSE and Tim Leiweke have mandated.

  • Bendit

    Adam Silver is going to hand out multiple fines next season, for “purposeful unbecoming play not in the best interests of the NBA”.

  • Brandon

    I want draft picks and a young player asset too, otherwise I couldn’t care less about this guy.

  • Bouncepass

    The main problem with trading Gay now is that he is probably at his lowest trade value. He still has two years left on his big salary contract, and his reputation as a player diminished in the past couple of years. I think that the Raptors would be smart to keep Gay this year, and expect him to have a big year leading the Raptors. Then, if they don’t see him as a long-term solution, they can trade him next season or as an expiring in the following season for a much better package. I think that having a team like the Raptors trade talent for cap space is a recipe for having a bad team for a long time. It’s not like they are going to be in the LeBron sweepstakes.

    • The Raptors will not be in the LeBron sweepstakes, but they can be in the Wiggins/Parker/Randle/Gordon/Harrison/Smart sweepstakes, and keeping Gay for another year hurts their chances for that. Is getting a little more for Gay really worth missing out on an elite player in the draft?

  • CJT

    Glad to see that last tweet about turning down that ridiculous offer. We would need assests in return. Simple.

  • Duncan

    im not gonna add much, since the guy with the most likes in this post has it spot on. this is OUR chance to go somehwere in the east. we have a strong young core, and tremendous offensive potential. if we get a solid backup pg and a good pf, then we can compete for 3rd in the east (refer to david bassily’s opinion). east has gone to shit so we should take advantage.. there are already too many teams tanking this year to even dream of getting a top 5 pick. so re-tool, right the ship and sail up the standings ujiri!

  • cdub

    not a good trade “as is” for the raptors, won’t be happening….MU can do better than that…more proof nobody on this site knows anything about basketball. MU is not going to trade Rudy Gay for 2 expiring contracts so he can enter into the tank strategy which equates to going to the casino to play slots and hoping you win…

  • robert_

    To all the tank advocates, how many teams do you think have actually achieved anything doing this strategy? Except for OKC, it does not work for the majority. Ask Sacremento, Minnesota, and Charlotte how that strategy is working out for them. Honestly, I’d rather be the Utah Jazz (Sloan years) and try to consistently make the playoffs every year even if it does not lead to a championship rather than tanking and hoping that the lottery swings our way year after year. For the author using the Spurs as example of how tanking was beneficial to get Duncan, you probably did not know about the NBA back then because a lot of things happened to facilitate the Spurs’ bad record (3rd worst that year) in the first place with it primarily being an injury plagued season and there was a head coaching change during the season. To those who think that being another Atlanta, Milwaukee, or even Indiana is not ideal, remember they have accomplished way more than the Raptors could dream of. I think it would be better for the Raptors to get in a position to be a perennial playoff team first asap rather than thinking of championships via tanking method. For a team that has not even been in the playoffs regularly, what gives the Raptors the right to think otherwise.

    • Okay. Let’s look at the situation here. There are three fairly undeniable truths about the NBA. The first is you need a superstar to really contend for a title (don’t mention Detroit, for various reasons). The second is that a team in Toronto’s position doesn’t attract superstars via free agency. The third is that the chance of trading for one or finding one in the draft outside of the top find is almost nil (with no high school players and better international scouting, there are no more Kobe Bryants or Tony Parkers).

      While no one LIKES the idea of tanking, it’s actually the best chance a team like the Raptors have of acquiring superstar talent, especially in the next draft.

      Your argument might have some merit if the Raptors already were a perennial playoff team. But they’re not. And they haven’t been on since Vince Carter was in his prime. Besides, a team’s goal shouldn’t be to build the next Atlanta Hawks. I was a big Utah Jazz fan, but that team had Karl Malone and John Stockton. This Raptor team doesn’t. They don’t even have an All Star.

      It’s true that there aren’t any successful tanking models to follow, but there aren’t any followable models in the NBA. The Spurs had David Robinson and the year he happened to be injured, did poorly and ended up with Tim Duncan. The Lakers traded for a 13th pick who ended up being one of the best players of all time at a time when high school players were undervalued. A few years later Eddy Curry goes number one. Then they signed the best center of his generation. Dallas traded for Nowitzki, a 9th pick, at a time when international players were undervalued. A few years later, Bargnani gets drafted number one on the chance he’s the next Dirk.

      It’s not about following models, because you can’t really do that. It’s about increasing your chances of acquiring a superstar player. And unfortunately tanking is the best way to do that next year.

      • robert_

        There’s no guarantee either that tanking now will net the Raptors something tangible during the next draft or any other one for that matter. From a draft pick, a superstar will often come in hindsight and not before. There is still a stronger chance that the Raptors will not get a superstar via the draft. Putting all your hopes and dreams on tanking for a better draft position is not conducive. And at this point, I do not believe it is feasible for MLSE to allow this team to outright tank. The Toronto market will not allow it. If the Raptors were going to tank, it should have been right after the Bosh sign and trade. They should have blown up the team then but unfortunately the Raptors have a habit of getting married to their top players and holding on to them for too long which has prevented them from selling high and getting meaningful assets in return. At this point in time with current state of the Raptors, I believe if they are going to shake up the team it should be to acquire talent to win now and elevate the players values to get even better assets down the line. Rinse repeat until then a superstar is found via FA or trades for draft picks. Either way, a winning atmosphere in Toronto is first and foremost.

        • No one has ever said tanking was a guarantee of anything. There are no guarantees in the NBA. The only thing you can do is give your team the best chance they can to try and achieve the ultimate goal.

          The best way to have achieve a winning atmosphere is to have great talent. They don’t have that now and the only way that they have gotten that in the past is through the draft.

          I do take issue with your “the market won’t allow it” comment. There’s simply no evidence to support that argument and, in fact, plenty to the contrary. The fact that there are so many fans that are for tanking tells you something. And if the Raptors end up drafting a superstar (whether or not that is Wiggins) and build a contender, they’ll have more fans than ever before.

          • ItsAboutFun

            “The fact that there are so many fans that are for tanking tells you something.”

            For the umpteenth time, you take an opinion as fact. What evidence is there that so many fans support tanking? A few dozen on here? What other evidence do you speak of?

            ” And if the Raptors end up drafting a superstar (whether or not that is Wiggins) and build a contender, they’ll have more fans than ever before.”

            To use your own terminology, there’s no evidence to support that.

  • thatpeterguy

    Throwing away 82 games to maaaaaaaybe get a good draft pick is ridiculous. I get the logic of building through the draft but it makes more sense to let that happen organically than to try to plan it. Say we are in the bottom 5 but end up with the 6th pick. Sure we get a really good player that is a potential borderline All-Star but isn’t that what we already have in Gay and Derozan? I would wait till the trade deadline and if we are clearly brutal then trade the team and tank away. But until then lets see what kind of team we can field.

    And even if you are a tankapalooza fan, a year with Charlie Villanueva would break me as a Raptors fan. That guy is TURRIBLE!

    • SR

      Normally I’m anti-tanking, but I’m open to it for 2014. This is not a normal draft year – the Raptors could draft anywhere in the top 8 and land a player better than Rudy Gay or DD. The odds are going to be much, much better than usual that you’ll land a high quality player.

      This roster as-is is heading for a bunch of Chris Bosh-era Raptors seasons. How much fun were those? I didn’t enjoy them at all.

  • FAQ

    Gay has a player option for 2014-15 and will likely not want to stay in TO, so I say trade him for
    Stuckey and Villi and let Detroit pay him big bucks for nothing much.

    Tanking in 2013-14 is mandatory to get Wiggins, otherwise it’s game over… believe it.

  • aaron

    IF your trying to tank you better get draft picks in exchange. This deal is terrible and would be suprised if MU did this deal.

  • Wiley

    It won’t happen. Ujiri already declined the deal.